Malcolm Appleby at 70
Carving and engraving are the techniques most closely associated with Malcolm Appleby’s work which ranges from large-scale publicly commissioned objects to the intimacy of
small vessels and jewellery. Text by Elizabeth Moignard.
THIS year invites us to celebrate 50 years of the engraving and fine metalwork of master craftsman Malcolm Appleby – and there is plenty to admire and to rejoice about in response to that invitation, and to reflect on too. Appleby’s biography shows us much of the justification for the maker’s reputation and the recognition his work and career have deserved and won, including his MBE and Lifetime Achievement Award from the Hand Engravers Association of Great Britain. But this is in many ways the scaffolding, and the content which is implied by his biography to date is what underwrites and partially explains the evolution of a remarkable body of work over 50 years. Malcolm Appleby was born in Kent, and trained, given his evident talent, in a series of respected art schools in the south east of England, finishing at the RCA in 1968, followed by the award of the Littledale Scholarship by the Goldsmiths’ Company – a promising foundation. However, it was the move to Scotland in 1969 and the setting up of his first studio in Crathes near Aberdeen which marked the beginnings of a lifetime of work which has always had its roots in his instinctive sense of connection with the place he inhabits.
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