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Higher degree by research students

Leslie Matthews


About me

I am currently a PhD candidate in the School of Art, Architecture and Design at the University of South Australia. My arts practice extends over 30 years, primarily as a contemporary jeweller and object maker having been involved in local, national and international exhibitions. I have also worked on numerous architectural commissions and have extensive experience as an educator.

Throughout my practice I have undertaken several international residencies, including The British School at Rome, Japan/South Australia Cultural Exchange and the Barcelona Studio, Australia Council for the Arts. My work is held in several public and private collections, including the National Gallery of Australia; Art Gallery of South Australia; Art Bank, ACT; Daalder Collection and Adrian Sassoon, London, UK.


Interpretations of spatial perception and the void, focusing on gestural mark making and notions of materiality and material expression to create contemporary jewellery and small-scale sculptures.

The focus of my enquiry explores the layers and interrelationships between spatial perception, the void, gestural mark-making, and materials that emphasise materiality and material expression. These seemingly diverse concepts connect at their boundaries, the liminal space, as an interface between the edge of line, gestural marks, material of the object and the space beyond.  Within a contemporary jewellery and craft practice gestural marks can be conveyed using engraving, scoring, embossing and creating textural impressions across various materials. I aim to incorporate these ideas, and a series of original approaches into the production of a body of work that articulates and challenges spatial and material perceptions. Pursuit of concepts that I am drawn to both visually and emotionally have always been, and remain an important part of my creative process. The discipline of making, exploring the senses of the body, and questions of material investigation are also an essential part of my creative knowledge.


Digital Transformations Research Group

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