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Mecurialist 2011

 Refers to one under the influence of mercury; a physician who uses mercury in any of its forms, in his practice.

I am pretty sure this refers to the chemical element that is; but I tend to look at it from another point of view. Mercury the planet is said to represent Hermes in Greek Mythology, he was seen as a messenger and a god with one foot in the physical world and another in the realm of the unseen. Mercury in astrology is said to cross many mental boundaries into your imagination and memories of the past. In an active mental landscape Mercury gathers and translates your personal experience on life.

Mecurialist 2011

This to me says a lot about Mecurialist the label, not only do they gather together elements of past and present to create almost futuristic relics, their pieces are individual and are interpreted as such by those who wear them. No piece is the same and each is crafted to offer something unique.

Mecurialist 2011

Melbourne based designer duo; brother and sister Emma & Thom Luke both have a background in industrial design which is evident in their approach to their collection. When previewing their winter collection ‘ The Art Of Componentry’ I was struck by something rather alchemic about it, they use the softest of kid leathers, aged canvas, cow hide and then juxtapose this with industrial metal; oxidized silver, blackened stainless steel and anodized aluminium. We had a chat to Emma about their latest work:

Mecurialist 2011

Machinery seems to be of influence to you in this collection, what fascinates you about this industrial look?

We both studied industrial design and have worked as product designers, so we have a real affinity with machines and industrial componentry. The nuts and bolds and inner workings of a product have a certain romance about them.

How does it differ from past collections, and have you repeated any styles from the past?

This is our second combined jewelry and leather goods collection so the label’s aesthetic is still evolving – and always will be, but we like the idea of blurring the boundaries between these two mediums and developing a strong industrial design ethos.

The leather collection has certainly evolved through a process of developing styles and the materials available to us, but the jewellery is very much about the process and pushing the boundaries with each technique so we have a lot more freedom in driving our aesthetic interests further.

Why is it important to you to use such an array of materials, mixing natural materials such as leather and canvas with stainless steel and metals?

There is something very seductive about hard metals and soft leathers – mixing materials brings a softness to otherwise harsh finishes and structure to very tactile surfaces. This is probably why we enjoy using anodized aluminum, because in a way it is a marriage of the two: the lush anodizing colours and warm, light nature of the metal gives the impression of softness yet it is still a hard metal object.

The latest collection has a series of “Alchemy” pendent pieces; how were these crafted as they seem quiet delicate?

These pieces have been individually hand made out of sterling silver. I wanted to achieve a balance between the scale and symbolism of the piece; the delicate silver and air around its silhouette creates an interesting play of shadow and light. Because the pendants are so large the effect is quite unusual.

Why is it important to creative one off individual pieces?

The beauty of working for yourself is that you can indulge your creativity, and produce things that are not always considered ‘commercially viable’. I think a lot of people are looking for unusual pieces that express their individuality. That is certainly what drew me to starting a label in the first place; to make unusual things for friends and myself.

You also exhibited your work at the NMIT ‘Forge’ Graduates Exhibition in late 2010, and won the APECS Casting Award for your designs. What was this experience like?

This was a great opportunity for me and other designers to showcase our work in a cohesive environment, and a fantastic chance to work on something really special and above the usual undertaking.

How do yourself and Thom find working together considering your brother and sister? Does it work well or do you drive each other mad sometimes?

For the most part it’s great, your expectations are higher and you can be blatantly honest with each other – which can be hard with other people (you know a sibling has to eventually forgive you for saying something harsh). I think all this can enhance the creative results. Having said that, yes some of the arguments are epic! Our parents are designers that work together though, so we have grown up with it.

Finally, what’s next for Mecurialist in 2011?

Building on the collection and enjoying the creative process. We do quite a lot of collaborative design work, which is great because we get to work with lot’s of creatives. This is great motivation and exposes you to different ways of working and to some really unique experiences. We will see where things take us!

Wise words by Jordan Moore

Images courtesy label

2 Thoughts on “Mecurialist 2011

  1. Tullia on February 6, 2011 at 9:22 am said:

    Love this

  2. Pingback: Tweets that mention Mecurialist 2011 | Style Melbourne --

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