Based in the heart of the City and on the borders of the East End, the Jewellery and Silversmithing Department at The Cass Faculty of Art, Architecture and Design has a unique historical and cultural place within the arts and crafts community of London. Courses include BA (Hons) Jewellery & Silversmithing; MA Jewellery; MA by Project: Jewellery, Silversmithing, Metal.
On the BA (Hons) Jewellery and Silversmithing course, students are encouraged to take an exploratory approach to ideas and materials. Opportunities for expanding the knowledge base for each student are promoted with a strong emphasis on experimentation with both ideas and practical applications. New and innovative methods of creation are fundamental to the exploration of form and structure within this course. Each class is tailored to the generation of a self-sufficient and motivated working process, with an emphasis on ideas and confidence-building with self-initiated projects forming a major part of their final year. Teaching includes exploring materials and developing narratives through the work while also building a strong base from which graduates can focus on their own professional motivation and direction within the jewellery and silversmithing industries. Students are encouraged to develop a comprehensive skills base while finding their own particular strengths through the course in order to achieve the making of a wide range of objects from the body specific to the abstract. They develop ideas toward a deeper understanding of their own motivations through explorations of both the content and the context of their work.
With spacious workshops and excellent facilities that span from the most traditional to the newest forms of prototyping and digital manufacture, each student can pursue a pathway that describes best their personal motivations and direction. With the ability to gain employment, an independent and forward-thinking graduate can choose a variety of career paths that include self-employment and entrepreneurship to film, theatre, fashion accessories, and gallery pathways, leading to a variety of exciting and productive ways to live and enjoy life.
MA Jewellery is an intensive taught course for design professionals and graduates to deepen skills and experience within the jewellery industries through the support of leading international contemporary designers and academics. This course aims to foster advanced practical and creative design skills relevant to jewellery design and production. Students are encouraged to develop an individual design philosophy to sustain a portfolio of design practice, and to evaluate the local and global language of jewellery and fashion design and consider ways of engaging new audience and product opportunities. Most members of the teaching staff are practicing artists and designers, and we enjoy the support of high-profile artists, designers, and manufacturers. Our outstanding facilities, specialist expertise, and related business activities (Digital Manufacturing Centre, Metropolitan Works, Design Nation, London Jewellery Week) support and prepare students for employment within jewellery design and enhance personal studio practice. The MA Jewellery Design course offers students a laboratory environment, with access to state-of-the-art digital and traditional facilities. Issues of sustainability and social responsibilities in design are explored together across territories of new industrial opportunities and craft practice. We emphasise the notion of collaboration across design disciplines leading to personal innovation of thought and design language. Value resides in cross-disciplinary collaboration associated with the understanding and exploration of contemporary design process creating fertile ground for innovation. Many alumni establish their own practice and work collaboratively across disciplines, crossing the parameters of fine art, design, fashion, and product.
MA by Project including Jewellery, Silversmithing, Metal offers the opportunity to develop your own project through in-depth study. Aimed at mid-career practitioners, graduates, and those transferring between disciplines. You can expect to raise your practice through developing a new body of work; prepare for PhD research or for a career as an artist, designer, or designer/maker; or transform an existing practice or business. The difference is that your project is negotiated; your project is the focus of your investigation and there are no set briefs extraneous to your project.
The course is concerned with both the idea of interactivity and that of process. That is to say, interactivity between individual students on the course as well as between staff and students; and interactivity between the theory of, and the practices within, the areas of art, applied art, design, and visual culture. Related to this approach is the view that all of these disciplines are part of a dynamic process whereby work is generated through a creative journey of reflective practice and interchange between theory, practice, and the cultural and social framework within which they are manifested. The project can be considered a journey of understanding the self through reflection on contextualised practice. There is a central concern with the development of methods that fall under the general heading of reflective practice.
The pedagogical structure is based on a core programme of research seminars within the research methods module and a commitment to independent study, monitored by a negotiated learning agreement, that are designed to provide the intellectual framework for your explorations of a range of practical and theoretical areas that in turn provide source materials to act as exemplars for further analysis and debate. Debate, testing, and working are a central aspect of and within the community that is the MA by Project.
Charlotte Gorse, head of the Design School
Simone ten Hompel
For more detailed information about courses, please check out the Cass website.
RECENT GRADUATES: If you recently received a degree--BA, BFA, MA, or MFA--from this university, everything you need to know to upload your graduate portfolio can be found at this link.