Scarlet Bennett is an Australian jewelry and metal artist whose work explores the textures and organic forms of the land. Her work features nature themes as they intersect with psychological, religious and spiritual traditions, exploring the meaning humans continue to derive from interactions with the natural world. An advocate of handmade, local and sustainable craftsmanship, Scarlet uses 100% recycled Australian silver and other refined metals in her work. She taught coppersmithing at the internationally renowned Tharwa Valley Forge in 2018-19. Scarlet holds undergraduate majors in history, comparative religion and psychology, and a Masters in psychology from the Australian National University. She is currently expanding her practice through a Masters in Jewelry and Metal Arts at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco. In her spare time, Scarlet loves running outside in nature, especially when it’s raining.
The word ‘oracle’ derives from the Latin orare, meaning ‘to speak’. Indigenous cultures around the world have found meaning in the movements and changes of their environments: oracles have been received from the whistling of the wind, a calling from the north, the movements and calls of birds and other animals. The crow has been a contentious oracle through history with some cultures viewing it as a sinister omen and others considering it a messenger of wisdom in times of need. Whispering Crow is a wearable shoulder crow, made in copper with an antique patina – a wise helper who provides guidance, warnings and assistance to those who take the time to notice and listen.
In the tradition of shamanism, a shaman is a ‘hollow bone’ through which the compassionate spirits relieve suffering. The four elements align with the cardinal directions and a range of animal totems. These animal totems can be surprising – instead of literal associations (fish for water, birds for air), the shaman reaches for whichever animal has the most to offer in a given situation. The Four Elements ceremonial series features a ‘hollow bone’ fabricated necklace with pendants that represent earth, air, water and fire. Each pendant expresses textures relevant to its element, with gemstones and totems that relate in a non-linear way to the element’s traditional meaning. The eyes represent the shaman concepts of ‘strong eye’ (seeing with the inner eye) and ‘awakened heart’ (seeing through feeling and compassion).