A goblet inspired by rail tracks to go on show in exhibition of finest hand-crafted silver

A goblet inspired by the weights on railway signals will go on show in an exhibition celebrating the finest in Scottish jewellery and silversmithing.

Monday, 26th July 2021, 4:45 pm
A goblet inspired by the weights on railway signals and handcrafted from ethically sourced silver will be among the beautiful pieces in an exhibition celebrating Scottish jewellery and silversmithing. PIC: Colin Hattersley Photography

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The silver goblet made by Edinburgh designer Ruth Page, winner of a Scottish Goldmsiths Trust annual search for student excellence, blends an ancient craft with a modern design.

It will be among star exhibits at the The Celebrating our Craft exhibition which will feature some 70 pieces created by craftspeople over more than 155 years..

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The exhibition opening in August will be staged at Hamilton & Inches where Ms Page now works as the youngest member of the team.

Ms page was snapped up by the luxury George Street jewellers in 2019 following a 3-month placement as part of her BA Honours Degree in Jewellery and Silversmithing at the Edinburgh College of Art.

The 23-year-old cites the urban landscape as her main design influence from the rail tracks to concrete blocks to graffiti.

For the goblet design she said she was inspired by the small details of Scotland’s railway infrastructure and architecture. The exterior of the goblet echoes the weights used on signals.

Rectangular cut outs near the base give a glimpse of a cone with a tiny gold sphere which is based on the anti-trespass panels. The inside is plated with black rhodium, giving a rich, dark lustre to the wine inside.

Ms Page handcrafted the piece from ethically sourced silver after being commissioned as part of her prize when she was awarded the Scottish Goldsmiths Trust (SGT) Outstanding Student Award in 2019.

The said: “I found out about the award the same day I learned I’d graduated with a first – it was the best day of my life.

“The use of fairmined silver was also important to me. And now to have the piece selected for an exhibition that includes some superb pieces of gold and silversmithing going back to the 1880s is absolutely amazing.”

The annual Outstanding Student Award invites entrants from Scottish art schools to come up with a truly exceptional design and the finished item is given a place in the Incorporation of Goldsmiths of the City of Edinburgh’s permanent collection.

Ebba Goring, Scottish Goldsmiths Trust Chief Executive, said: “This is a wonderful piece of work by Ruth. It embodies exactly the kind of beauty and quality that we are trying to nurture among young Scottish silversmiths.

“By commissioning this goblet in Fairmined silver we know exactly where this material came from, in this case the Macdesa mine in Peru. We also know that the mine meets the Fairmined standard relating to social, economic and environmental standards.

“For it to be chosen to be exhibited alongside so many rare and unusual pieces created over more than 155 years underlines how exceptional it is.”

Also among exhibits will be a selection of sporting trophies and the famous bowl and candlesticks by Nicola Williams which was created to celebrate the return of a parliament to Scotland. It is currently on permanent loan to the First Minister at Bute House.

Organisers hope it will shine a light on the skills of the generations of hand engravers, jewellers, polishers, silversmiths and watchmakers based upstairs in their workshops. The Hamilton & Inches exhibition is at their Edinburgh showroom from 26 August to 5 September.

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