Blue and Gold Knot, brooch, 2006, 18k gold, lapis.
Coral Black Tangle, brooch, 2006, oxidized silver, coral.
Pink Black Tangle, brooch, 2006, oxidized silver, coral.
Burgundy Gold Knot, brooch, 2006, gold 18k, garnet.
Mary Preston's current work reinterprets what’s familiar and formal in the lace bow as used in historical jewelry, whether in a sentimental 17th century lover’s knot, a tie for a floral corsage, a jeweled, enameled ribbon imitating a detail of fabric trim, or simply a starched, ironed ribbon sewn to the bodice of a dress.
Much like ribbon itself, my brooches begin as two dimensional planes of metal—flat patterns with eyelet edges. But unlike the distinctive and methodical tying of a bow, my works involve a calculated chaos, formed by hand into seemingly random clusters.
The resulting knots and tangles, while reminiscent of ribbon, remain untamable and unruly, each embodying its own spontaneous gesture.