Precious, small and wearable works by brisbane-based jeweller Barbara Heath is on display at Craft Queensland’s Gallery in an exhibition titled, a little bridy told me.Barbara says the 15 brooches she created explore her interest in the symbolism of birds forecasting the future. “In symbolic language, the mystic hero was often accompanied by birds,” she says. “Birds have a mystical quality.” Deliciate in style and set with gems, these brooches are divided into two groups; seven silver designs and eight in gold.When she embarked on the designs in her Wilston studio, sketches of birds from the 1770s inspired Barbara. The sketches were found in a book borrowed from a friend. “It’s very different work for me, for the past 12 months I’ve been thinking about this show.” Barbara describes these works as contemporary yet with an antique feel. All pieces are available for sale.Queensland designers Kirsti Simpson and Malcolm Enright, Barbara’s husband created the striking installation. “It’s a series of boxes – like nesting boxes with a white perspex front,” Barbara says. Holes cut through these hutches allow the viewer to see the brooch, shows at its best thanks to fibre optic lighting installed by Michael Dowling.This follows on from Barbara’s recent jewellery displays in Japan of brooches, bracelets, necklets, earrings sets, pendants and rings. Along with eight other Australians, Barbara was invited to show her work in Japan for the kimino season and was helped by her assistant jewellers Carolyne Pearson & Master Jeweller Juan-luis Gonzalez

DesignWORKS by Julia Ross © Queensland Newspapers