The Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths’ has occupied the same location near to St Paul’s Cathedral for its livery hall since 1339, while its existing grand building designed by Philip Hardwick dates from 1835. In 2012 the Company opened the new Goldsmiths’ Centre in Clerkenwell with the RIBA award-winning extension and refurbishment of the old Eagle School originally built in 1874. The new facility designed by architects Lyall, Bills and Young houses a training centre with workshops, training and education facilities, and conference and exhibition spaces. The new and old buildings are connected by a glass atrium over the original playground area which brings light down into the central exhibition space open to the public for the Centre to display the best design and craftsmanship in the field.
The atrium is currently displaying the winners of the Goldsmiths’ Craftsmanship & Design Awards 2015, Britain’s “Oscars” for the precious metalworking industry, covering a wide range of work including enamel, engraving, wire work, silver work, jewellery and the innovative incorporation of modern technology for the man or woman who has everything.
Included in the display is Ray Walton’s chased silver vase and Justin Richardson’s silver claret jug, winners of the senior Gold Award in Silversmiths and James Kydd’s Barathan silver crown, winner of the junior award. Laura Bangert has created a modern version of a gold knot ring with diamonds breaking out while James Handyside maintains the tradition of fine engraving with his pictorial plate and there are several joint winners of the Gold and Silver Wyre Drawers Award including Hazel Thorn’s colourful sculptural bowl, Nan Nan Llu’s coiled silver beaker and Karen Elizabeth Donovan’s wirework ring
To show that design remains relevant for the technological 21st century, Clive Taylor’s Executive LED Lamp is the winner of the Gold Award in Technology Innovation.
Awards which celebrate contemporary design in a number of metalworking fields, while recognising both traditional skills and modern technological innovation.