In a recent PCD, Cynthia talked about the work of Randee Ketzel who has created imitation opal cabochons using polymer and other materials. She then featured Liz Hall here We are lucky in Australia to be the home of incredibly beautiful opals and in fact, just 3 hours north of here is White Cliffs, the home of the unique pineapple opals. White Cliffs is an opal mining town inhabited by 200 odd people when the weather is cool and 70 pretty bonkers ones when it is hot. It gets very very hot in White Cliffs. Most of the White Cliffians live in dug-outs, underground homes where the temperature remains a pleasant 19-22 degrees. So in Summer, as long as you stay inside most of the time, you are OK. Just a very long way away from anywhere.
I love to visit White Cliffs and am honoured to have some lovely friends there. A surprising percentage of White Cliff folk have come to Nepal with me which says something about their resilience and taste for adventure. And some have done classes with me both in White Cliffs and Broken Hill – a mere 300 kms away. One of these is Barbara Gasch, a German born metalsmith whose work is exquisite. Yesterday, she showed me a pice that combined her love of opal and otherness with her inspiration from reading Maureen Carlson’s Faeries, Gnomes and Trolls. While I still seriously covet her electroplated silver, kangaroo dung and fly necklace that Barbara now has on display in Lightning Ridge, I do like this one too!
And totally unrelated, here are two links that really made me laugh this week: