Image: Micheal Rowe

This book has been kindly funded by:

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This book has been supported by:

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This publication critically explores the revival of British fine metalwork by designer-makers since the 1970s. It demonstrates many strengths; the increase in that period in the number of practitioners, the creative use of a wider range of metals and materials, the supplementing of traditional techniques with newer ones, design innovation and a wide range of products, with emphasis on art objects; all of that taken together, has transformed the craft. This success has been underpinned by a number of supports: government initiatives, assay offices, livery companies, professional associations, exhibitions, and education, though there are increasing concerns about the availability of funding for craft teaching. That and pressures created by economic difficulty offer challenges to a craft which is often expensive and raises anxieties about the future. But over the period covered by the book, Britain has re-established fine metalwork and has earned itself a strong international reputation.


The book is substantial and scholarly. It contains roughly 70,000 words, including over 900 footnotes. Apart from the eight chapters, there is a bibliography, glossary. The book is also richly illustrated with over 200 still and moving images.​



Ken Quickenden

A graduate of The Courtauld Institute of Art, with a PhD from Westfield College, also of the University of London. Formerly the Head of the School of Theoretical and Historical Studies and a Research Professor at Birmingham City University. Publications include the Virtual Gallery of Contemporary Fine Metalwork (DVD 2007) and the Virtual Gallery of Contemporary Jewellery Jewellery (CD 2000) as well as many on silversmithing and allied trades in the eighteenth century, especially on the work of Matthew Boulton.


Lee Hewett

Lee is an artist, lecturer, and researcher based at Birmingham School of Art. Subject areas including BA Fine Art, BA Art and Design and Art-Based Masters. Lee has also worked on a range of funded research projects and journals. He is currently undertaking a PhD at the Royal College of Art.


Adam Neal Research / Production Assistant

Adam provided valuable assistance in the production and realisation of the book.

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