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Close-Up of Pin
This unusual pin is one of Neil's most recent experimental projects using new, and unfamiliar materials. He has always been fascinated with Japanese metal work, and has wanted to learn about some of their unique metals. This pin was made from a sheet of sterling silver with a smaller sheet of moukme gane soldered onto the upper 2/3. The swans were overlaid ontop, and carved. The lower edge of the mokume gane has subtle vegetation engraved into it and the silver foreground has some bright cut engraving suggesting water.
Mokume gane (Japanese for "wood grained metals") is a type of Japanese married metal made from diffusion bonded laminates often used in decorating swords, in this case made with layers of silver and copper. It is usually worked from the back to produce valleys and ridges on the front, which are filed and sanded to reveal a unique design. A specially formulated chemical treatment leaves a rich patina, highlighting the character of the metal's design. There is risk and discovery in making each piece. "Swans" is Neil's first venture into this process, but likely not his last.
Hand Engraved Pin, Handcrafted, "Swans Over Wetlands" item # "sengr.pinswans2.jan10"
Mokume Gane & Solid Sterling Silver, Approximate Overall Dimensions 2¼" x 1¼"
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