"I have a phobic relationship with plastic, particularly the disposable and single-use kind. I despair how reliant we are on it, and how unthinkable it would be for most to remove it from their lives. This was never more apparent than on a trip to Japan visiting the Tsukiji Fish Market in Tokyo. I was horrified to see a mass of polystyrene boxes being pushed by an earth mover, breaking and releasing the floating toxic balls into the atmosphere as it formed a colossal mountain of waste.

In making jewellery and objects out of reclaimed polystyrene and single-use plastic I aim to transform this ‘waste’ into something more and give it a chance at a second life. The material mutates into pyrite-like clusters, blackberries, chunks of rock, and geometric shapes; entombed in copper via electroforming. The result is something seemingly weighty but light, recognisable yet foreign, discarded now valued. To prompt the wearer to pause and reconsider what we thoughtlessly discard in our daily lives, and what lasting impact it will leave."

Polly Dymond is a contemporary jeweller, maker, writer and arts coordinator from Melbourne. Moving to Adelaide at the beginning of 2020 she is based on Kaurna land as a Jewellery and Metal Associate at JamFactory. A finalist of the DIA GOTYA Awards (Jewellery) and recipient of the NMH Metalworks Prize for Smithing, she completed an Advanced Diploma of Jewellery and Object Design at Melbourne Polytechnic in 2019. Her work explores ancient traditional techniques combined with contemporary explorations into discarded single-use plastics, transforming them into precious and permanent artefacts.

This Mess Series, 2021
Electroformed oxidised copper, street salvaged waste polystyrene, brass, enamel paint, stainless steel
This Mess Brooch #2 Blues, $340
This Mess Brooch #3 Greens, $340
This Mess, Brooch #8 Galaxy/Red, $460
This Mess Brooch #9 Green/Purple, $400
This Mess, Pendant #17 Galaxy/Green, $825

Image top: Polly Dymond, This Mess Brooch #2, Blues and #3 Greens, 2021. Photo Grant: Hancock