Michelle Oh studio
Behind every giggle there’s a Michelle, we used to say, back in our Foundation Degree at CSM seven years ago. 19 year old kids, fresh out of highschool, fresh off the plane dressed in ‘uni clothes’ picked by our mothers while in diapers ready to poop crayolas for art school. Giggles were the soundtrack to our lunches on the curb near the burrito van, and none of us had yet ruled out becoming astronauts or firefighters when we grew up. I definitely was one of the few to forget that, stopped buying underwear at the Disney store, took myself too seriously during the next few years in BA, and declared Hello Kitty an arch enemy. (Not to be mistaken with the boy that snickers at penis jokes that still lives inside me) Michelle and I reconnected on our third year, which is when I first featured her work here, sophisticated yet full of character. She still had the giggle though, which was puzzling to me, and yet another three years later I visit her studio in 2013 it was still there. An hour into poking around her new studio on Mount Pleasant it hit me, DUH, that each of her pieces say exactly that: curiosity and innate playfulness. Her jewellery design aesthetic is inspired by ‘found’, everyday objects (corals, twigs…) that are cast into beautiful organic shapes. All come with a story, giggle-blessed of course, and can also be commissioned to suit your own story, style and budget. It probably didn’t help me going around the studio stupidly asking ‘is this where you cook rice for lunch‘ to a metal-treating machine to take us straight back to being the girls of 2006. Then we had a Daddy Donkey burrito for lunch on a curb for the sake of it all.
Also, always find myself jealous of how she gets to work with borderline psycho-dentist tools and Thor hammers while all I do is tweet dirty jokes from bed as a profession, like come on. The only time I get to play with tools is when a client requests the font to be changed to Comic Sans, which is when I use my own psycho dentist drilly stuff to say ‘aw hell no’ with… and it’s never often enough.