Rebecca Jewell has developed a unique printing technique (based on paper litho transfer) like nothing seen before. She delicately reproduces the natural patterns of exotic bird feathers – and even portraits of the birds themselves - directly on to plain white feathers. Her prints are stunning.
This is a curated exhibition of paintings and sculptures inspired by birds and feathers including work by Rachel Deacon, Pam Hawkes, James Mortimer, Katy Sullivan, papier-mâché bird sculptures by David Farrer and new gallery artist Rebecca Jewell.
Short film about Rebecca Jewell exploring her artistic practice.
Rebecca Jewell grew up in Nigeria and North London and spent a year aged 18 in Papua New Guinea, where she encountered Birds of Paradise, Cockatoos, and Parrots. This was to have a huge impact on her life as an artist. After studying anthropology at Cambridge, she went on to do her PhD on Feather Art at the Royal College of Art.
Her intricate drawings and unique feather collages, are inspired by her passion for conservation. Using a technique she has perfected for printing images onto feathers, Jewell collages these feathers into assemblages representing ‘headdresses’ and ‘capes’.
Rebecca Jewell’s artworks have been widely exhibited in the UK including shows at the British Museum (where she is artist in residence in the Oceanic department) and the Natural History Museum.
Rebecca Jewell has had work selected for the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, the ING Discerning Eye, the National Open Art Competition, the National Print Biennale and the National Original Print Exhibition. She is a member of the Art Workers’ Guild, and a Fellow of both the Linnean Society and the zoo.
Each feather is hand-printed using oil-based ink and an etching press. The images are taken from historical illustrations of birds, and some of Jewell’s own drawings. The patterned feathers are made by printing the natural patterns from exotic bird feathers onto white feathers. Some are dusted with gold pigment. Each feather is unique.
Sourcing of the feathers
Jewell sources the feathers used in her work ethically. Most of them are moulted white feathers from her own doves. Some come from domestic goose and duck and are sourced from UK suppliers to the millinery trade. Some of the turkey feathers come from an organic turkey farm in East Sussex. No wild or endangered birds are killed to make the artworks. All the feathers have been cleaned and pre-frozen.
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