Simon has lived and worked at Montsalvat since 1973. He is tightly woven into the fabric of the place. Staff at The Meeting Pool (Montsalvat’s restaurant and cafe) can make his perfect coffee with their eyes closed. His studio is full of treasures collected over decades and lovingly arranged and rearranged in groups on every surface. His little garden grows herbs for use in his kitchen. Gardenias are plentiful. He loves cooking and tells me he makes a mean risotto. But it’s his jewellery making that he is most passionate about. When I ask him about himself, he tells me it’s his work that’s important, nothing else matters. When you see his exquisite jewellery you understand. He uses the very best of stones and precious metals. He finishes each piece with unsurpassed attention to detail. In acknowledgement of this, Simon participated in the making of Prince Charles and Princess Diana’s wedding present, where originality and quality were paramount. A commission from the Australian Government. His brief was to create the sterling silver handles hinges and corners for the Tasmanian blackwood box that held handmade silver plates by Hendrick Forster.
These chopsticks also look like they could grace the table of royalty. Simon won the Eltham Art Award with more beautiful table ware… a caviar spoon made of ebony, rubies, pearls,18k gold and mother of pearl.
Several signatures mark out Simon’s work from the rest. There’s a diamond on the inside of this 22k gold ring, invisible while the ring is being worn. Sort of like exquisite ladies underwear. Simon calls this his “lingerie”. How gorgeous is that!
This beautiful hand painted wing suggests one of Simon’s other signatures. Each piece of jewellery is signed with a stylised wing to suggest Simon’s middle name- Icarus. This artwork appears on his business card.
Simon works on a commission basis. Each piece made according to the buyers specific needs. Each piece a one off. If you have a yen for an exquisite piece of unique, handmade jewellery, contact Simon on 0418 567 693