THE RINGS: I

THE EARLY DEVELOPMENT.


                         

'Beauty is Menacing'

       

'Towers for Admiration'

These early rings were interacting sets of five. Depending on the order in which the rings were placed on the finger, the direction they were faced, and even the number that were worn, they created a different sculptural space each wearing.

These rings were heavily influenced by such motifs as radar dishes, aerials, antennae, and what Phill termed 'space platforms'.

At this early stage (mid 'eighties) of Phill's development, gold could not be afforded, so the rings were made mainly of sterling silver, with gold being reserved for use as rivets to join the titanium to the silver.

The image on the left shows the set being worn on Phill's little finger; the image on the right shows the set on its stand of neoprene and titanium.

                   

Another early set of three rings, which Phill entitled 'Molecules' because of their similarity to scientific models. The two forms of iron used - haematite and pyrites - were to be further developed in Phill's later work. The beginnings of this series of work were reviewed in the Craft Australia magazine.

                    

                    

Later in the 'eighties, such sets of rings disassembled into loose series. These 'Saucer Rings' were by then made in 18k gold and patinated sterling silver, and set with sapphires and rubies.

From time to time Masons still designs interacting sets of rings, especially using suites of gemstones, but in general the focus shifted to singular rings as the 'nineties approached.



SETS AND SERIES...

                

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Detail of the poster from the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery advising of current exhibitions at the venue.

       

'Eye of the Idol': a very early (1987) set of five interacting rings, fabricated from sterling silver, titanium and garnet. Purchased as a presentation by the Style Modelling Academy, Hobart, 1987.

  

A very recent (2006) instance of Phill's ring sets. 'Triangle, Circle, Square' is three interlinked rings in the Russian wedding ring manner, with three coloured 18k golds (rose, white and yellow); three cuts of stone (trillion, brilliant and checkerboard); and three types of garnet (from the top - rhodolite, pyrope, spessartite)

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Brooches from the 'Molecules' series (see rings at left)