DAVID J LILLY BA(Hons) MA FRSA
My creative interests have always been varied, and since I was a 4 year-old when I got my first box of Lego bricks I have loved making ‘stuff’.
Over the decades there have been many things I’ve turned my hand to including wood, card, plastic, glass and mud – roadways, cars, planes, windows and dinosaurs, I’ve tried my hand at many things that interested my creativity., some of those materials I still use today, but mud is not one of them!
In the 1980s I was collecting Art Deco and that carried on through into this century until in about 2005 when my eye turned to the style of my childhood, mid-century modern, and in particular Brutalism – those big concrete and glass forms that so many people love to hate but I have become intruiged by and in love with.
My jewellery making began with me playing around with fold-forming copper, which is great fun, then somewhere along the road Brutalism raised its head again and I have been hooked ever since – at last I have found my muse and its big, heavy, brutal and all together beautiful.
Then of course there are the gems. Even though I am colourblind I love colour and from a very early age had a fascination with all types gems.
When I was young an uncle (who had live in India) gave me a small plastic pot of rough diamonds, rubies and sapphires:I still have that small plastic pot today with the gems tucked in it exactly as they were when given to me. I now cut and polish the gems I buy - mostly as cabochons, and doing this gives me enormous pleasure and freedom as I can size and shape them to fit with the aesthetic of the jewellery I’m making.
I hope that you find my jewellery a joy to behold; it might make you smile or surprised, but I hope it brings out an emotional reaction in you. Most of all I hope that you can see the joy I had while making each piece. If you’d like to let me know what you think I’d be delighted to hear what you have to say.
I am extremely lucky to have a studio in the kind of place I find most condusive to being creative. Some might find it strange when looking at what I make, but being in the countryside is where I find my creativity flourishes. Since 2012 the studio has been in a 17th century barn in the farmyard of Applesham Farm. The farm nestles on a hillside overlooking the river Adur in the ‘missing’ (it died out during the Black Plague) downland village of Coombes, West Sussex; just west of Brighton.
If you fancy visiting you are very welcome and you’ll most often find me there on a Saturday, but please phone me (07796 141180) before turning up in case I’m out or running a workshop.
As well as being a jeweller I am the UK’s only Dalle de Verre glass specialist and regularly teach stained glass window making..