Sang (Susan) Jiang
My degree project, Sweet Things in My Life is an ongoing body of work that originated from my pure love for the iconic sweet things that have been a part of my life. I have produced a performative jewellery collection inspired by one of my favourite Chinese street foods, tanghulu. The intention was primarily to explore the reasons for my inherited love of sweets. I tried to investigate the difference between the food itself and the visualised tanghulu image imprinted in my mind throughout the process. The research process for this specific Chinese street food took me back to my childhood home town. The physical separation created an opportunity for me to observe the food rationally through historic research, documentation, and interviews on the subject of street food; these different perspectives were added to my blurred childhood recollection. This period of research also allowed me to develop a deeper understanding of the fundamental material used in my jewellery practice, enamel. The enamelling process helped me rethink the original food texture, pattern, and taste.
My project is based on personal experience, which incorporates sweets, dreams, memories, religious beliefs, and love. The Sweet Things in My Life collection was not a direct product of imagination.
My enamelling practice is the best method for capturing time. Not only did the process of creating these art pieces originate in the past, but it also allowed me to roam back in time. The process of recollection, therefore, became fundamental to my primary research. However, I also injected innovation into these new creations. I chose to create a series of playful performative jewellery which evidences the ongoing accumulation of knowledge in my enamel and silversmithing practice.
Although, the work originated in the past, the Sweet Things in My Life collection celebrates the present through its new formalised characteristics.