London-born New York-based illustrator, Kaye Blegvad, is known for her sensitive work, which often touches upon social issues like mental health and female identity. Working across a variety of different media, her work includes ceramics, metalwork, textiles, and print. She’s also a celebrated jewelry maker, with her line of jewelry, Datter Industries, inspired by ancient artifacts, talismans, ritual, and the natural world.
“I’ve been fortunate that I’ve only been asked to work on projects I’m actually interested in,” she told Metal Magazine, when asked about some of her collaborative work. “I think it can happen that you get a job that’s very prescribed, and not something you really want to do, but you do it anyway and that’s got to be a tough way to work. But I think art directors are trying to choose artists who they can tell will be right for the job and that includes being interested. So all of my jobs have been pretty good to me, nice problems to solve.”
With her jewelry work, she combines both her passion for illustration and metalwork, turning her drawings and ideas into unique pieces of jewelry. All pieces start out as models hand carved in wax, which are then cast and finished individually by hand in her studios (based in London and New York). The work is intended to show signs of being handmade, nothing too clean or too perfect, with the process being part of the finished product.
“Making jewelry started as very much an experiment, a hobby,” Blegvad admits. “A friend showed me how to work with casting wax, and as soon as I got my first pieces back I was hooked. It is still so cool to make something and have it transformed into metal. I never get bored of that.”
“I’ve always been interested in meaning being attributed to objects, to wearing things that have some sort of power or story behind them,” she adds. “I’m just lucky that other people seem to want to wear them too.”
Take a look at some of her unique products in the gallery below.