Industrial Inspiration cont. by Alex Kinsley
Gold für Eisen is a series of rings I created as part of my Iron Idenity collection, translating to Gold for Iron from German, these rings aim to explore what these factories and industrial sites meant, and to some extent, still mean to the city of Hamilton.
The Berlin Iron movement of the 19th century serves as a historical link for me, the idea of industrial material and aesthetics used in self-expression, as well as the subtler connection to loyalty to one’s city/state/identity which was encouraged by the Prussians during the time. Connecting this with the pride and loyalty many people have for Hamilton, though this pride is partly of its grimy industrial attitudes, has led me to look back at my home and upbringing.
The places and structures I reference directly influenced the culture of Hamilton. These former steel mills, manufacturing facilities and factories provided good working-class jobs, and were once economic symbols announcing the prosperity of the city. Now that we have moved into a post-industrial economy; transitioning into service-based industries, these places look dirty, out of place, and the desire to tear them down for new development is strong. I grew up around the last of these industrial sites when the flame of industry was already diminished. I feel compelled to record the physical and emotional identity of this city in order to come to a better understanding of my own identity.
I hope you enjoyed this look behind the work.