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Nan Nan Liu

Nan Nan Liu Silversmith
Contact
Chinese, English
Hours:
By appointment only
Phone:
+44 7515127009
© All rights reserved

Bringing east and west together

  • • She combines western art with Chinese philosophy
  • • One inspiration is the age rings of trees
  • • She is never bored by the repetitive process of her work

At first, when deciding what to do at university, Nan Nan Liu thought that accountancy was a good idea, but a year into her degree she realised that her childhood passion – taking her mother’s jewellery apart and rebuilding it to her own designs – was what she really dreamed of doing. She moved from Luo Yang, China, to England where she attended a foundation course at Dudley College and perfected her skills with two great masters, John Bartholomew and Malcom Appleby. Now, her work – objets d’art and accessories made from layers and layers of paper and silver and “a lot of soldering” – is inspired by nature: the age rings in trees, the forms that water can take, hair and even smoke.

Read the full interview

Works

  • © Goldsmiths’ Company
  • © Yeshen Venema
  • © Yeshen Venema
  • © Yeshen Venema
  • © Nan Nan Liu
Photo: © Goldsmiths’ Company
Shell object

The rings visible on the cross section of a cut tree can reveal its age as well as a story of a specific time in history. Inspired by this natural occurrence, Nan Nan builds up her collection of silver objects by assembling them in ring-like layers. Silver wires were shaped and then soldered together to give this final shell-like form.

Width 16 cm
Length 26 cm
Height 12 cm

Photo: © Yeshen Venema
Coiled beaker

Looking at the rings in a tree trunk can help us determine its age but also tell stories about historical times. This has been a constant inspiration to Nan Nan, who builds up her works in clearly defined layers recounting the story of the piece’s creation. Nan Nan assembled layers of fine silver wire then soldered them together, creating the final irregular form.

Height 12.8 cm
Diameter 8 cm

Photo: © Yeshen Venema
Pill box

Various layers of fine silver wire were assembled and soldered to create a curving, wavelike shape. The opening was rimmed with gold leaf. Nan Nan has always been inspired by the rings in a tree trunk that help us determine its age but also recount the stories of historical times. In the same way, the carefully defined layers of her creations tell us their story.

Height 10 cm
Diameter 5 cm

Photo: © Yeshen Venema
Silver candlestick

Layers of fine silver wire were assembled and soldered to create this tree-like silver candlestick. Nan Nan has always been inspired by the rings in a tree trunk that help us determine its age but also recount the stories of historical times. In the same way, the carefully defined layers of her creations tell us their story.

Height 52 cm

Photo: © Nan Nan Liu
Tree-inspired object

Nan Nan cut paper into thin strips and then connected them with glue into their final undulated form. The rim was finished with copper strips. Nan Nan draws much of her inspiration from the rings found in tree trunks, indicating the age of the tree as well as a time in history.

Width 28 cm
Length 30 cm
Height 13 cm

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