‘USE’ ARTIST SPOTLIGHT – Helen Wyatt

Currently on display at Hurstville Museum & Gallery is the exhibition USE. This exhibition features exquisitely crafted contemporary jewellery and small objects by seventeen artists from the Jewellers and Metalsmiths Group of Australia (Queensland Chapter), toured by Museums & Galleries Queensland.

Helen Wyatt first began experimenting with jewellery in the 1970s as she studied Fine Arts at the University of Sydney. She continued refining her style and skill as she furthered her studies, completing a Masters of Visual Arts (research) from Queensland College of Art.

Now based in Sydney, Helen describes jewellery as ‘art you can wear’ and hopes that her pieces encourage people ‘to look at things in ways [they] haven’t before’. Her works have been described as ‘wearable landscapes’ which explore the impact that humans have had on their environment. It is these instances where nature and culture collide which inspire and peak Helen’s curiosity the most and has also developed into an interest in history.

Helen Wyatt, image from Bundanoon Trust

Helen aims to challenge the notion that jewellery has to be made from precious materials, and is inspired to create ethical and sustainable works. She achieves this by using recycled silver and collecting her waste materials.

“My small crafted objects are works of art that embody ideas and feelings drawn from marginal places. They enhance the person who wears them and they occupy a discreet space – an intermediate place – between the world and body.” – Helen Wyatt

‘Helen Wyatt’, F Tanner Baker, viewed 25 September, https://www.ftannerbaker.net/

Career highlights for Helen include exhibiting her work in the USE exhibition as well as representing Australia with thirteen other artists at the Contemporary Jewellery Triennial, HOW Gallery, Shanghai in 2018/2019 and having her work included at the State of Shine at Melbourne’s Radiant Pavilion, 2019. She is also a writer with a focus on visual art, having written for Garland online magazine, Klimt02 and Arts Hub. Helen also curates the Window Gallery at the F Tanner Baker Micro-Galleries in Sydney.

Broken Window, 2017, Sterling silver, brass, stainless steel, varying sizes

For more information you can visit Helen Wyatt’s website and Instagram.

USE is on exhibition at Hurstville Museum & Gallery until 25 October 2020.

References:

‘Helen Wyatt’, Bundanoon Trust, viewed 25 September 2020, https://www.bundanon.com.au/residents/helen-wyatt/

‘Helen Wyatt’, F Tanner Baker, viewed 25 September, https://www.ftannerbaker.net/

‘Helen Wyatt: I walk the line’, Brisbane Art Design, viewed 25 September 2020, https://brisbaneartdesign.com.au/events/helen-wyatt-i-walk-the-line/

Stiles, Mark, ‘Helen Wyatt: Life is revealed through layers’, Garland, viewed 25 September 2020, https://garlandmag.com/article/helen-wyatt/

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