This assignment is an introductory problem in designing and constructing three dimensional body adornments worn directly on the skin in the form of an earring or body piercing. Typically this type of adornment is attached by means of a hole through the skin, but not always. In this assignment, the pieces will be built by connecting sheet metal and/or wire through riveting and welding. The project will provide additional experience in metal fabrication techniques including sawing, filing, sanding, texturing and etching, plating and finishing processes. One pair of piercings is required for this assignment.


Techniques: At least one type of rivet must be used in each pair of piercings, and at least two of the three types demonstrated must be used in the project. Part of the intent of this project is to experiment with and reinforce your basic fabrication techniques such as riveting, sawing, filing, sanding, etc. You should design the piercings to make use of these basic techniques rather than branching out into techniques or materials that have not been introduced. Special attention should be paid to craft, as excellent craftsmanship demonstrates mastery of technique, and is 10 points of the 25 that the project is worth. You must also include laser welding in your project design.

3D design: It is essential that all three dimensions of the piercing should be considered in the design, as well as how it will look on and off the body, and how it will be displayed. Consider how the piercing will interact with the body part it is designed for. For example, a range of function from comfortable-everyday to experimentally- difficult are possible. Consider what your piercing signifies as well. Art is a text which can be read, so what does yours say? When choosing from your sketches, develop at least one design piercing that is conceptually and formally challenging. Between design, sketches and drawings, and the methodology 13 points of your grade rest on creative problem-solving.

Materials: Full design consideration should be given to the various aspects of the metals available for this project, especially color, weight, and reactivity. Not all materials can be worn directly against the skin-- especially through the skin. The parts of the piece that are in direct contact with the body should be made of stainless steel, silver, titanium, or niobium as these are the least reactive metals that are practical for us to work with in a Beginning class. If you are creating a body piercing incorporating a barbell-type finding, you are encouraged to purchase it rather than attempting to fabricate it. You can and should make french hooks yourself from the wire provided, and I will provide posts to those who need them.


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