Καρίς (Κārī́s) is a conceptual jewellery brand, founded in 2020 by Ismene King. Ismene is an Athens based sculptor, who works in ceramics. For Καρίς, she works with clay, creating gestural jewels, letting the hand create quick, weightless forms out of the soft material, to be worn as a gesture on the body, both by women and men.
Ismene works with clay in a painterly manner, creating unique pieces. The surface of each ceramic jewel is painted with intense colours using ceramic stains and oxides. She draws inspiration from natural forms, colour combinations found in nature, plants, fruits, seeds, patterns on the skin of tropical fish and animals, as well as the properties of her own materials. Each composition generates another, in an endless and exciting process of learning and exploring the form, the properties of colour and the brush stroke.
The brand’s current collection ‘Miasma’ was born as soon as Ismene was able to return to her studio after the quarantine. Thinking about touch as an essential part of working with clay and the longing for it, during these bizarre times, it became important and urgent for her to express herself. She observed the current detachment from anything bodily, in the new kind of daily life, yet the heightened constant awareness of the body and especially that of the hands and the imaginary marks they leave on everything they touch. She therefore created an ongoing series of loose forms, where hands and finger prints are apparent, in a therapeutic manner, and they are made completely out of touch – the finger’s or paint brush’s touch, the leaving marks on the textured surfaces.
Images © Panos Astor Koffas