Nan Nan Liu’s silverware is both tactile and dynamic with a contemplative quality. Her creations breathe a life of their own, they are at once subtle and bold, reflecting Liu’s profound interest in natural forms and energies.
For Liu the sensory and evolutionary qualities of her craftsmanship are paramount, interlaced with a continuous exploration and development of traditional silversmithing skills.
Courtesy to The Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths
She identifies an early starting point in her creative development as a fascination with tree rings and their narrative depiction of growth and the passing years. She is equally drawn to water, in particular its unpredictability and multiple moods, from a seemingly still calmness to wild turbulence.
Her creative career first flourished with innovative paper sculptures. The cutting and layering processes that she favoured led her to silver wire and the fresh challenges presented by this new medium.
She works intuitively, overlaying threads of silver and gold into primarily organic shapes, embracing the precious metals’ inherent vitality. She creates patterns through repetition with variations that are open to change, deliberately allowing new methodologies, textures and aesthetics to evolve freely.
These processes combine to create unique silverware pieces in a style that is instantly recognisable.
Just like the essential forces that inspire her, Liu’s work is in constant flux, reflecting a feeling of supple motion, shaped by her own energetic and inventive focus and the materials themselves.
Liu’s creations in silver and gold are collected worldwide, privately and by institutions such as the Victoria & Albert Museum and Goldsmiths' Company.
Liu has also welcomed a number of high-profile commissions in the past, including original designs for the New College, Oxford and the the Worshipful Company of Gold and Silver Wyre Drawers for Cambridge University. She is currently working on an important commission for the Worshipful Company of Weavers. For more information about commissions in general, please visit the dedicated page.