Following her first solo exhibition 'Paper, Wire, Rock' in December last year, Courtesy of the Artist kicks off 2014 with a profile on contemporary jeweller Kaoru Rogers. Kaoru's work is now available to buy at Courtesy of the Artist in the Strand Arcade, Sydney.
Tell us a little bit about yourself? I’m a designer and a maker of contemporary jewellery. I was born in Japan but spent my childhood moving back and forth between different countries. After an advertising career in Tokyo, fate brought me to Australia and I have been living in Sydney since 2002.
Who/what are you inspired by? I’m inspired by my surroundings and how children see the world. It reminds me of my own childhood and the wonders I felt towards simple things like the beauty of a soap bubble floating in the air.
How do you describe your signature style? I am not sure if I have a particular style. I do love simple design with a clever twist. Something so simple yet complex or surprising. Repetitive shapes that are slightly offset. Asymmetry in something that feels symmetric. Various colors, textures and tones that blend seamlessly. The list can go on.
I also love a bit of whimsy in a design or a look. I like the idea of jewellery having a bit of playfulness - like a clever catch that makes it wearable in multiple ways or having that “something” that creates a conversation between people.
How would you describe your process? I normally start out with an idea or a concept. I think this reflects my background in advertising. I am trying to train myself out of this a little so I can be more intuitive and free.
I start playing with mock-ups before I draw or scribble. Paper, wire, plaster, string – anything I can get my hands on. The scribbling might come after that. I use a lot of blu tack to work out my shapes and forms. I like repeating the same form in different materials or colors.
I think the design process is like working out a puzzle or a game. There is a moment where everything just seems to fall into place.
What's next for you? I would like to build on some ideas from my first solo exhibition “Paper, Wire, Rock” and develop a new range of work. I am also keen to join the local gem club. Not sure where this will take me but I am looking forward to the ride.
Give me three words that describe your work? Simple, Linear, Playful.
Is there anyone you dream of collaborating/working with? It would be nice to collaborate with someone from a different discipline - someone who works on a different scale, material or a process. I think this always opens up your mind to new possibilities and ideas. I’d love to start up a collaborative project with the family too. My kids have been drawing up sketches with their ideas recently and my partner is a man of many skills and interests.
View Kaoru Rogers' work here.