Excerpt from the Foreword for “Barbara Jardine: Goldsmith” by Professor Georgina Follett, OBE, MDes RCA, FSCD, FRSA.
Barbara’s work is of the calibre of individuals such as Charlotte De Syllas, David Courts, Bill Hackett, Reema Pachachi and Cynthia Cousens, all of whom have stayed within the fine jewellery tradition and successfully developed through their individual skill set a fluency of language. In doing so they have produced pieces that give to the viewer work that stands independently as a work of excellence while also having the visual signature and integrity that ensure those who see the piece know, with certainty, the author. Just from looking a the range of work produced by Barbara, you can see the thought process that moves from one piece to another, you can identify her as the author; this is the method by which one can judge the work of an artist of quality and standing.
All craftspeople should have mastered the silent practice of craftsmanship and material selection, which in all work of the highest quality must serve the articulation of the vision of the individual. They are not enticing or engaging you with their skill, but presenting you with a deep personal visual statement, one that gives the imagery supremacy, allowing the legend to unfurl, drawing you into a space of contemplation, and enabling the viewer to establish a symbiotic relationship through the individual’s personal iconography. Their work is timeless, not susceptible to fashion, for it stands outside the transient and within the world of heirlooms where it will make its journey independently throughout its lifetime. Barbara’s work does this. She is a practitioner, a jeweller of the highest order. Call her an artist, designer, fine craftsperson – any of these titles fit. They fit because of the work she produces.