Clara Breen had a problem. What others see as bits of paper to clean out of bags and back pockets and stow away in drawers, she finds utterly precious, sentimental and meaningful. So she took your tube ticket and turned it into wearable art. Leaflets and transport stubs are her fodder, and jewellery making her craft.
She holds tight to the emotional power of memory and weaves it into her work, explaining, “We often keep hold of train tickets and photographs to remind ourselves of a past experience. Combining these with silver, I play with the notion of preciousness, reinterpreting the keepsake.”
Utilizing colours such as cobalt blue, lime green and fuchsia, Breen follows the shape of her brooches, necklaces and earrings with paper strips in a style that could be described as deconstructed origami.
A strong focus on material as the starting point and inspiration for each design is evident in Breen’s work. Rather than decorative or elaborate, the lines are clean and severe, while negative space between neatly folded paper creates a beguiling, contemporary pattern.
Breen is based at Cockpit Arts in London, a social enterprise and creative business incubator based in central London. Cockpit is a hotbed of up and coming designer-makers, and Vogue has billed their studios as “notorious for fostering some of London’s most creative talent.”