I have spent the last few months mulling over how to approach the 'Donning Oxford' project that, as well as co-curating, I am exhibiting in. The text below gives a good insight as to how my own work is going to take shape...

The Truth behind Oxford?
On my first research visit to Oxford I set out with the intention of unearthing what it was that made Oxford, Oxford. I wanted to try to capture the essence of this city; I was looking to make sense of it. I observed and recorded in an effort to uncover clues which would help me decipher its truth.
It became clear as I explored this city that it is one of mystery: Buildings and places where entrance is restricted yet which display tantalising views and hint at a secret world beyond.

View over the wall: one of the Oxford University Colleges

Walking its streets, I observed how the city imparts compelling extracts of its narratives; snippets of conversation overheard or fleeting moments observed; stories of which we can only guess the beginnings or endings. In this exploration of the city I found myself drawn to the detritus and marks left behind, whose traces belied the stories played out on the city's stage.
I find myself approaching this enquiry as a detective would a mystery. I am trying to piece together the evidence in an attempt to reconstruct and retell this city's stories.

Strange signs on the Oxford streets


Rowers on the Isis.
'Oxford Rowers' photo Tamsin Leighton-Boyce

I am currently working in collaboration with Natalie Smith and Tamsin Leighton-Boyce on a curatorial project of contemporary jewellery. This exhibition 'Donning Oxford' will be showing throughout the month of June 2012 at the O3 Gallery, Oxford.

This exhibition looks to explore and stretch the notions of how or what it is to 'don' Oxford.

Contributing artists are all UK based and have been selected for their collectively broad approach to jewellery making and will undoubtedly reflect, interpret and respond to this theme in varied and surprising ways.

We will be updating a blog for this exhibition 'Donning Oxford' regularly, so feel free to sign up and see the progression of this work from initial inspirations through to the final show.