Was it just a coincidence that last summer whilst I was busy working on fine-tuning some of my spiral wirework jewellery designs that the British Library contacted me? If you’ve read my last few posts, yes quite amazingly I got to teach my Anglo-Saxon inspired spiral wirework jewellery making masterclasses as part of their iconic Anglo-Saxon Kingdoms exhibition.
The spiral design is a feature of many Anglo-Saxon artworks, in manuscripts, metalwork, stone crosses etc and it’s also a design that has fascinated me for decades.
some info about the spiral symbol
The spiral is believed to symbolise the journey or cycle of life, perhaps in some instances, it represents a serpent, the cosmos or the spiral of life. But, when used to decorate Anglo-Saxon crosses in churchyards (see below), the running spiral design also known as a plant or vine scroll is thought to symbolise Christ as the true vine which gives life and is a visualisation of salvation and paradise.
In my late teens and early 20s, I spent some years travelling, working, backpacking around the world and having adventures (will share a few of these with you another day). This time in my life enabled me to experience many different places, its people and their culture. Art, design and history have always interested me and my travels helped open up my eyes to this new world of mysterious sacred places, our ancient ancestors and their artwork.
I could see many similarities across the continents and time divide, from Australia, South and Central America to our European Neolithic ancestors, the Celts, Anglo-Saxons and Vikings. The mystery of why they all created these spiral designs and what this and other symbols signified has intrigued me ever since… and yes, I still find spirals everywhere!
Well, there is a little bit more on this inspired by spirals journey, that involves my own jewellery designs and how my new business name found me, which I will share in some of my next blog posts, come with me on my adventures…
Wishing you sparkles of light!
Thanks for joining me on my creative journey,
Sam Rowena, jewellery artist x