From her beginnings as a Saturday trader at Leeds Corn Exchange to being one of the lead speakers at Origin last year, Kath Libbert has certainly changed her life around. Previously an NHS employee, Libbert now runs one of Britain's leading galleries - The Kath Libbert Jewellery Gallery - specialising solely in jewellery, silver and metal smithing. Based in the idyllic setting of Salt Mills in West Yorkshire since 1996, Libbert's experience in promoting, exhibiting and selling contemporary jewellery gave her an authoritative role at last years' Origin Retailers Day. During this talk she focused on her professional role representing more than seventy established and emerging artists and makers, including a wide range of British and some International artists. According to Libbert, 'Origin is great when you're thinking about curating. You can collect people there because it's a great place to meet people.' Her jewellery is, she likes to say, wearable art - each object has to be crafted exquisitely - and Origin is one of the best places in the UK to find it.
Yet it is Libbert's exhibition, Now and Then, which is presently occupying much of her time. A collaboration with Susan Rumfitt - of Antique Road Show fame - Now and Then explores four central themes: Power and Politics, Sentiment and Sex, Memento Mori, and the Lighter Side. The exhibition includes new work by Jerwood Applied Arts joint winner Adam Paxon, as well as fine antique jewellery from 1800-1950. Highlights include 'Regard' brooches and rings which, by using a sequence of Ruby, Emerald, Garnet, Amethyst, Ruby and Diamond, demonstrate the visual language used by the Victorians to communicate sentiment. Others included in the show will be well-known Dutch jeweller Ruudt Peters, Danish designer Inger Larsen, and ethical designer Silke Spitzer. With such a range of interesting makers Now and Then promises to be remarkable exhibition - a far cry from such humble beginnings on a market stall in Leeds.
The exhibition opened on the 17th of July, and will include Adam Paxon discussing his work at a special Collectors' Event on the 16th of September, alongside Susan Rumfitt.
Website: Kath Libbert Jewellery Gallery
Telephone: +44 (0)1274 599790