Next up in our Bold Place features showcases the work of Chris Levis, a jewellery maker and talented artist.
After a break of features whilst we worked behind the scenes on our features and website generally, we are back with a bang! This feature continues our ongoing collaboration with the wonderful ladies behind Bold Place, the shared co-working creative studio space in Liverpool.
Today’s feature showcases the abstract work of one of the co-founders Chris Levis. After speaking previously to fellow co-founders Cherie Grist and Jazz Stan about their views on how they have found owning their own creative space collaboratively, we thought that we would also need to speak to Chris to finalise the views of the founders.
Chris does not just speak to us about her life as an artist, she also tells us about her other love of jewellery making which is shown via her online store Curious Owl.
Chris’ jewellery designs compliment her paintings well. The jewellery collection she has managed to create is extremely admirable whilst juggling being a co-founder at Bold Place and a painter.
Over to Chris…
Your art seems very raw and free, why did you feel this was a style of art you were drawn too?
I’ve always been interested in landscapes as a subject, so working in a more abstract way happened naturally. I think my painting at the moment is a bit of a battle between chaos and control, which sometimes works out, and sometimes ends up in me destroying the canvas.
Your Instagram shows your day job as ‘Curious Owl Shop’ do you believe your art work and your jewellery work ever correlate together?
While I really enjoy making jewellery as a day job (and know I’m really lucky to do it), I don’t ever see it crossing over into my art work in a serious way. Art is really personal to me and comes from a very different place than the jewellery design. It sounds odd – but they use really different parts of my brain.
Would you ever collaborate your jewellery collections to showcase your art work further in a different medium in the future?
My jewellery design is definitely inspired by some of the same things as my paintings – particularly natural forms and lines – but I have no plans to merge the two at the moment. I have a fairly large collection of jewellery currently, and I actually want to streamline it more in the future.
What would be your biggest tip for someone who is wanting to work in a creative field as a freelancer but doesn’t know where to start?
I’d probably say other creatives working in the field you want to freelance in are your best source of help. No one wants to give away trade secrets or do the work for you, but a lot of people will point you in the right direction and tell you some pitfalls to avoid. I’d also say if you’re serious about it and you’re in an okay place, then just go for it. I found a lot of the business side of things sounded scarier than it actually was, and Google can give you the answers to most questions.
You are one of the brains behind the beautiful Bold Place, why was it important to you to collaborate with Jazz and Cherie to make a female led co-working space?
I was so lucky to find Cherie at 104 Duke Street a few years ago. I’d just moved into the city on my own and had to leave my previous studio, so I was really worried about finding somewhere new. Cherie was so great and welcomed me in right away, I knew I’d found a gem. My room was next to Jess’, who I’d already seen at craft fairs and from her work around the city. They’re both really driven and strong women, and we all shared the same vision to create Bold Place. We’ve been on the same page from day one, and I’m so happy to see our new home flourishing with amazing people.
Would you say working in a shared studio space with other likeminded people has improved your work as an artist and inspired you?
Definitely! I’d mostly stopped painting before we moved into Bold Place, but seeing all the stunning art going on around me was really inspiring. Everyone is always so positive and encouraging, because we all want each other to do well. There’s no competitive atmosphere – in fact there’s already been a lot of collaboration going on, and we plan to do a lot more! There are always lots of interesting ideas floating around, and you’re never short of someone to chat to if you need to work something out. Plus, someone always brings in good snacks. It really is a joy to go there each day.