If you are unsure what to buy a loved one this Christmas, help a street child in India by buying jewellery from Rosie Odette’s Ladli collection. She is one of forty artists currently exhibiting at the Claremont Hotel, Second Avenue, Hove until April next year.
Many of the artists live in Brighton and Hove. Collectively they are exhibiting one hundred and fifty pieces of contemporary art including painting, textiles, ceramics, printmaking, illustration, photography, jewellery, knit-wear, collage, mosaic and sculpture.
Rosie Odette is a jeweller who works and trained in creating bespoke jewellery in Hatton Garden, London.
However, from January to May each year she goes to India to source her gems and work with her manufacturers out there. She said: “I want to go and find my own treasure. I go to India to source gems and design them.”
As a practising Buddhist, a positive philosophy underpins her work: “I want women to feel beautiful and perfect as they are with their flaws. The concept and ethos of my work is about believing in yourself. It is about women buying into themselves and feeling brilliant as they are.”
Rosie said you can create wonderful things in the West but she was attracted to the healing properties of the gems found in India: “There is an energy behind the gems. It is the power of transformation.” She recommends the King of Crowns from her regal limited edition collection for men and women battling depression because it represents faith, hope and destiny.
Six drop ruby necklaces are available from her less exclusive opulence collection. She said: “Rubies encourage you to follow your dreams, helping you recognise the beautiful being within.”
However, Rosie’s business is not just about profit. She has set herself a target of helping 100,000 women and children in India by giving them the materials to craft jewellery at the Ladli Skills Centre in Jaipur, India. Ninety-five percent of the proceeds go directly to the girl at Ladli who made the necklace and five percent go to the project. Click here to see the Ladli collection.
Speaking about the street children she says: “It is not, oh, poor you! Those who suffer the most, they shine the most and they don’t forget where they come from. They do not have false belief or false happiness. I want to work with women, particularly in India.”
In time Rosie would like most of the people she works with in India, including her manufacturers, to be women and girls from the Ladli Project.
Hong Dam is a refugee from Vietnam and a digital artist who contrasts the East of her childhood with the industrialised West. Another overcrowded dinghy drifts off Europe’s coastline with another group of faceless migrants. Hong asked: “Are we becoming immune to the suffering felt by those with little choice but to leave their homeland? As a refugee, I am always searching for the promised land.”
“Having children took me back to my own childhood. I started to feel that my daughters and I live in two parallel worlds – the contrasts and conflicts of East and West – the wants and needs are so different. I decided to document a visual diary for my two children.” Click here to see Hong’s work.
Jane Sampson has been screen printing and teaching at her Hove workshop for fifteen years. She said: “Screen printing is a sophisticated form of stencilling. The stencil is put on mesh photographically using board not paper.” She presses blue pigment onto the board to create a velvet effect. Jane created the birds with gold pigment by printing a negative and leaving the birds out.
Jane likes playing with lots of different materials and uses vintage photos because of their glamour. She said: “There is a romance about old images that modern things don’t have.”
Franchacha is a digital artist using a technique called “glitch art.” She uploads photographs into a generator in her computer and then changes the code. She likes this art form because it is random and unpredictable with a different photograph, for example a magnolia tree, producing a different effect.
She said: “With glitching you cannot tell the computer what to do. The colours are not intentional. It is just fun. Random, fun, sometimes frustrating. You can’t plan it. It is about enjoying it. You go into something and you don’t know what you will get out. I have a creative head and like to use it.” You can see Franchacha art here.
Hove artist Joe Campoli teams up with Philip Nelson to blend glass and silverware into jewellery and ornaments. You can see their artefacts here.
Self-taught, Joe has a kiln where he melts together small pieces of different coloured glass in overlapping layers. He has different sized moulds that fit in the kiln. Some pieces need more than one firing. He makes a lot of bowls and plates, leaving the edges rough and natural so that his products do not look like crockery from a department store.
Joe said: “Sometimes there are surprises and I am not so happy. Most of the time it is like Christmas day.”
If you would like to make a difference to an Indian street child this Christmas, consider buying a Ladli necklace from Rosie Odette.
You can view the full collection at the Claremont Hotel as part of the Artists Open Houses in December, curated by Coralie. The exhibition will run through until April 2017. For a sneak preview click here.