D4 Keum Boo on a Spoon

Spoon by Julia Rai
Spoon by Julia Rai

Submitted to the Registry evaluators - November 2008

I loved making this spoon. I’d never made a spoon before so it was quite interesting to start looking at these everyday objects to get some inspiration for my own spoon. I saw it as an egg spoon, something that would easily dip into the top of a boiled egg. The spoon is 13 cms long with a little pointy kink in the end. The handle is hollow, made round a drinking straw. I added the pointy bit on the end separately.

The scores for this one were a bit of a mixed bag.

Design – 3.5 out of 4
Keum Boo 2.5 out of 2.5 – just as well as I teach Keum boo
Relation of parts – 1.5 out of 2.5
Innovation 0.5 out of 1

​So 8 out of 10 overall. The positive comments were very nice, “I enjoy the substantial feel of the spoon and the slightly threatening pointiness of the handle. The patina contributes to the piece.” On the downside, here are the more critical comments, “Keum boo oval is safe and predictable…fails to integrate with the rest of the form.” Which is why I got only half marks for innovation I think.

​The final comment from the assessors caused me a bit of anxiety, “The small balls along the handle bring a lot to the design. The commercial texture on the back of the bowl, by contrast, was a disappointment to one of the evaluators.” This was a shame because I never use commercial textures. The spiral pattern on the reverse of the bowl is a tear away texture I made. In discussions I realised that they weren’t saying I’d used a commercial texture, as in a bought texture plate. The spiral design is a very common pattern so commercial in this sense meant something that’s seen everywhere. I learned a valuable lesson here – always use clearly unique textures for the Masters Registry!

Here is the description of the project from the Masters Registry website:-

​D4 Keum Boo on a Spoon

Keum-boo is an ancient Korean technique used to fuse pure gold onto a pure silver surface. In Korean culture, this was applied to eating and drinking vessels so that the food or beverage passed over the purifying gold and brought good luck to the user. In this tradition, make a functional spoon of metal clay and embellish the inside of the bowl with gold sheet in the process known as keum-boo.

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