Rebecca Hannon

Black and White and Red All Over

July 24 – August 22, 2010

Rebecca Hannon

exhibition view

Rebecca Hannon

exhibition view

Rebecca Hannon

Swirl Necklace, 2010, multi-color laminate, cable

Rebecca Hannon

Carnival Necklace, 2010, laminate, silver, turquoise, coral

Rebecca Hannon

Branch and Oval, earrings, 2010, laminate, oxidized sterling silver

Rebecca Hannon

Long, (20'), 2010, laminate, cable.

Black and White and Red All Over

What is black and white and red all over?


It is a riddle, and child’s play, but this time it is not a newspaper.


Paper-thin porcelain, vibrant Formica chips and elemental forms make

up this body of work. I had the pleasure of teaching Foundation

Studies at Nova Scotia College of Art and Design this year and had the

joy of re-discovering the basic principles of visual communication

alongside my students. We mixed colored film together with multiple

slide projectors to create pure white light.  We took gorgeous tubes

of primary gouaches and mixed to create deep black. Black and white.

This intrigues me. Light and its shadow are inexorably linked. White

and black are all the vibrant colors of the spectrum, expanded and

contracted. I dreamed of a pure white exhibition, but shadow and then

a pop of red-orange crept in.


The pure white is “Keraflex” a paper-thin porcelain material, made by

a German industrial manufacturer and recently introduced to artists.

In its “green” state it can be easily cut, scored, folded and fused.

When fired it becomes gorgeous translucent porcelain that traps light

in its layers. I was studying folk art, making paper models and pop-up

books with my students and this quietly drifted over into my studio

practice. I spent a year not thinking of jewelry, but experimenting

with this porcelain paper to learn its strengths, possibilities and

most importantly to transcend its 2-D nature and pop it into 3-D.



When I began to make my porcelain forms into jewelry, black became a

natural partner. Black is the shadow found beneath the fold of a white

rose, and it is also the patinaed setting that will join porcelain to

the human form. Red and then all the other colors from Goethe’s color

wheel proceeded to make an appearance. The colored laminate chips

spilled over from previous works; their contrast in color and texture

was too dazzling to be refused.


Without much ado, the jewelry is simple, wearable, but very carefully

articulated to make it appear so. Clearly influenced by the first

modernist sculptors and architects such as Brancusi, Calder, Gropius

as well as cross-cultural folk traditions of paper folding, these

jewels interact clearly and boldly with the human form. This is the

unique opportunity that jewelers have and these elemental forms are

carefully considered to do just that.


R.H. 2010