Spotlight on a Silversmith

Posted September 25, 2013


Spotlight on a silversmith – the work of Alan Craxford who has created works of art and fine jewellery in silver, gold and platinum for over 40 years.  Alans work is now highly collectable.

Alan Craxford started his career studying technical drawing and acquired a skill that was to serve him well in the future.  He then trained as a silversmith and jeweller, producing designs for which very fine, very detailed and highly accurate working, scale drawings were needed if the pieces were to be manufactured!

One of the things that makes Alan’s work so distinctive, is the combination of hand engraving and carving that creates a wonderful interplay of light and shade when the piece moves.  The  two triangular vases illustrated above – Sol and Luna Vases numbers 1 and 3 – show the skill of the Alan’s hand engraving to perfection.   These vases are two of the original three, each 30 centimetres high, raised in silver, hand engraved and finally gilded in yellow and black.  The hallmarks feature prominently on this collection, positioned as part of the design on the side of each vase so that they reflect on the surface of silver vase beside it.

Hand engraving is a dying skill but in the hands of a master such as Alan, it is also an art form.  Alan was a founder member of the Hand Engravers Association which was set up to encourage and train young people to take up the craft of engraving by hand into metal and also gemstones, and to feature it in their work.  He has also taught hand engraving and for many years ran the short course programme for Sir John Cass College, part of London Metropolitan university.To see more of Alan Craxford’s work: www.alancraxford.com

To learn more about hand engraving: www.handengravers.co.uk

To see the work of many fine silver and goldsmiths, including the work of Alan Craxford, please visit the Goldsmiths Fair, Goldsmiths’ Hall in Foster Lane, London EC2V 6BN which is on now until 6th October 2013

Photography of the Sol & Luna Vases: Simon B. Armitt:  www.simonbarmitt.com