Spotlight: Bic Tieu

Bic Tieu, Garden brooch

This is the first in a series of Australia craftspersons who are eligible for the World Crafts Council – Asia Pacific Award of Excellence. These include finely made and innovative objects that are designed for everyday use. The objects in this spotlight shows the value and appeal of Australian craft today.

Bic Tieu proposed a lacquer brooch.

She describes the process:

The surface graphic design was developed and then etched onto copper sheet metal using an acid etch process. The metal was then cut and constructed to form the brooch box form. The work is then polished completely before it undergoes a patination process which turns the copper surface to a pink/red colour. Urushi is then carefully painted onto the surface within the etched channels. Eggshell is then carefully inlaid. The work is then left in a humidity box for about a week to cure. The last stage is adding on the brooch finding.

The meaning draws on the long history of lacquer as an art form:

A myriad of cultural symbolism from the East and West combined with materiality are primary elements applied in the design and making of the jewellery and objects. I particularly use the language of lacquer, a natural material which comes from the tree sap distinctive in Asia to discuss transnational ideas of my identity.
Lacquer is a special medium discovered over 5000 years ago from China. Through trade routes is spanned across the Asian continent. I have spent many years starting in Vietnam and then Japan to learn the traditional processes and techniques.

You can find Bic Tieu on Instagram at @bictieustudio.

08. October 2018
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