Burr Wood Enamelled Panel
Beautiful free standing burr wood enamelled panel by Gillian Harkness.
Approximate size: Height 12.5cm x width 21cm x depth 6cm
Starting with a piece of copper sheet, Gillian adds a coat of liquid enamel and when dry she sgraffitos her chosen image into the surface and then fires the piece in the kiln.
She then adds additional layers of enamel as required before adding pure silver foil to areas and then firing the piece again to adhere the silver to the surface. A final firing with a coating of clear enamel protects the silver and stops the metal tarnishing.
Using an oxy-acetylene torch, Gillian changes the shape of the surface and edges of the pieces and by texturing the copper she creates a surface to which she can apply the same enamelling techniques.
The pieces are then mounted on wooden panels, trees sections or burrs.
About Gillian Harkness"I have always had a huge interest in art. I originally attended an enamelling course for five years at the Bristol School of Art and Design under the tutorship of Elizabeth Turrell. I also combined this with a silversmithing and jewellery making course.
I have been an active member of the Guild of Enamellers for many years, being a regional representative up to 2009. Attending the yearly conferences and meeting many like minded passionate enamellers, has helped broaden my interest.
I was awarded the Maureen Carswell award for the entrant gaining the highest marks at Craftsman level and the Kenneth Benton Award for the most original and innovative use of enamelling in any technique. I have also won the Enameller Elect award, chosen by members at conference, in several years.
My recent work uses the natural formation of various tree burrs to give inspiration to my design which incorporates use of the oxy-acetylene torch and sgraffito techniques. Pure silver foil is applied onto the surface to enhance and give additional detail to the image.
Looking to change the shape of the flat surface of the metal, I have experimented using a doming press, an oxy-acetylene torch, fold forming, etching and repoussé to change the shape of the surface and edges of the pieces which I am working on. Enamelling using this technique involves a lot of time-consuming processes that, hopefully, produce original and always unrepeatable pieces of work."