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Sarah Read – Artist: Profile

I have been a practicing artist since 2006, though I first graduated from Art school in 1983.

I describe myself as an artist who works in the field of contemporary jewellery. By this I mean I don’t (usually) make engagement rings, or (ever) do repairs. Rather, I make work that usually relates in some way to the body, that has an intention beyond adornment, and that draws on our shared long history of  making, wearing and collecting jewellery.

In recent years I find myself increasingly attracted to projects with an element of collaboration, third-party participation or social practice.

You can see some of my work at http://sarahread.com. Scroll down this page for my CV and references.


Key skills

  • Contemporary jewellery discourse
  • Conceptual thinking, critical response
  • Small object design and fabrication
  • Interdisciplinary collaboration
  • Gallery visits, collector support



Sarah Read was born in England. In 1996 she moved to Wellington, Aotearoa New Zealand, where she still lives and works.

Sarah graduated with a BA Fine Art (Hons) from the University of Newcastle-Upon-Tyne in 1983, majoring in Sculpture, but then spent some 20 years doing other stuff (technical writing/renovating houses/travelling) before she discovered the world of contemporary jewellery.

In 2010 Sarah graduated from Whitireia New Zealand with a BAppA, majoring in Jewellery, and since then has been an active member of the contemporary jewellery scene in Wellington.

Sarah is a co-founding member of The See Here, an artist-run window gallery in central Wellington, and is a Jewellery fellow at Whitireia NZ.  She is a participant in the travelling show Joyaviva: Live jewellery across the Pacific and the Handshake mentoring project, where she is partnered with Iris Eichenberg.



CV: Sarah Read, Artist, Contemporary Jeweller

Education / Art training

  • Cranbrook Academy of Art, MI, USA (guest of Iris Eichenberg)  2011
  • BAppA Visual Arts (Jewellery), Whitireia New Zealand 2010
  • BA (Hons) Fine Art, University of Newcastle Upon Tyne, UK 1983

Current activities


Selected exhibitions

  • HandShake 4, Toi Poneke, Wellington, NZ, HandShake 5, The National, Christchurch NZ
  • Joyaviva, RMIT, Melbourne Australia
  • Retrospect, James Wallace Trust, Pah Homestead, Auckland, Retrospect, Wallace Gallery, Morrinsville


  • SOFA Chicago, USA (Cranbrook Academy’s booth)
  • HandShake 1, studio 20/17, Sydney, HandShake 2, National Jewellery Show, Wellington, NZ, HandShake 3, Masterworks, Auckland, NZ
  • The See Here at Masterworks, Auckland, NZ
  • Best in Show, Objectspace, Auckland NZ


  • Nestle (solo show, included Labour of Love – The Reveal) , Wellington, NZ
  • The Exchange Project, Studio 20/17, Sydney, Australia
  • SOFA Chicago, USA ( Charon Kransen’s booth)


  • SOFA West, Santa Fe, USA (Charon Kransen’s booth)
  • handSTAND Unfamiliar & innovative contemporary jewellery, Auckland


  • Retelling Tales: Translations in Contemporary Jewellery, Wellington Museum



I have been privileged to work with Sarah for the last four years and seen a steady progression, with some unique results, like having a NY gallery dealer and instigator of impressive social art projects.

In the last year Sarah’s exhibition work demonstrated unique development with impressive creative impact. It is apparent that Sarah’s practice has benefitted greatly from her participation in the HandShake project, where she is paired with the esteemed Iris Eichenberg, head of the jewellery department/artist in residence at the Cranbrook School of Art, USA.

Her Handshake blog shows her unique passion, enthusiasm and generosity.

Peter Deckers, Head of Jewellery, Whitireia New Zealand

i saw Sarah’s face and heard her voice for the first time via skype , an unfriendly medium for a good conversation.
a medium not made to build trust and or be direct and feel comfortable to speak for me at least.
Sarah’s honesty and carefulness , unpretentiously sharing her wonders and thoughts made me overcome this barrier.
later on in our contact she spend some time in my department and the first impression was just a little glimpse of what she has to offer and give.
this is a beautiful mind and a deeply invested person to whom you can trust the stories of life.
she will treasure them greatly.
…and you might find yourself seduced to look at the little things in a different way…..
Iris Eichenberg, Artist in Residence, Metals, Cranbrook Academy of the Arts, MI, USA



Distraction neckpiece (2012)
Ducking, pearls, hammer


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