Chien-Wei Chang

Friday 10th August 2007

30 July 2007 27 January 2008

Manchester Art Gallery is to exhibit six new works by contemporary silversmith Chien-Wei Chang. The Taiwan-born artist is currently one of the UK’s most exciting new makers working in metal. His sculptural pieces, made from silver, gilding metal, gold leaf and wood, combine references to Eastern cultures with an intuitive, physical response to metal. The result is contemplative objects of exquisite detail.
Chang’s works are inspired by emotional and spiritual journeys. Pieces on show at Manchester Art Gallery will include A rising star (2006), a self-portrait depicting Chang’s personal struggle between the excitement and pressure of his increasingly successful career.  It’s your problem, you are the one who needs to change (2006) is a responsive piece created as a personal relationship came to an end. Everytime when I think of my childhood hometown (2007) is another autobiographical piece that contrasts Chang’s feelings of achievement in the UK, against a sense of loss and alienation as his homeland, Taiwan changes. The creation of this piece also inspired the artist to write a poem about his experiences, which will be available for visitors to read in an accompanying exhibition booklet.

Chien-Wei Chang has been working as a maker in the UK since 2000. He previously worked in the commercial jewellery industry for Tiffany’s International. However, Chang became increasingly frustrated by the uniformity and mundane nature of the commercial jewellery business. In 2000 he applied to London Guildhall University to undertake an MA in Silversmithing and Jewellery Allied Arts, which he followed with a City & Guilds qualification in Silversmithing Large Work at London Metropolitan University. He has since exhibited work at the Craft Council’s Origin and Collect events and in 2004 won the British Jewellers’ Association Merit Award. His work will also be exhibited at the Goldsmith’s Fair and Origin 2007, and Collect at the V&A, 2008.

A selection of ladles and spoons made by Chien-Wei Chang will also be available to purchase from Manchester Art Gallery’s shop.