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Hal Messel’s work bridges the often formalised gaps between silversmithing, art and sculpture-making. He is known for incorporating magnificent, rare metals, crystals, shells and corals into his work. His pieces are a celebration of the innate art he sees as present within nature and in his process he intends to add to its wonder.
Feeling strongly that his only limitation is his own imagination, there is a clear ambition present in Hal’s work. From striking silver & gold centre pieces to exquisite silver & glass coral salt sellers, the painstaking hours that Hal has dedicated to the learning of his trade are readily visible in every facet of his work. It is no surprise that he casts the silversmith titans; Omar Ramsden, Paul Storr and Fabergé as his greatest inspirations.
Having begun his artistic life as an oil painter, studying on the degree course at City and Guilds in London, Hal left art school and went on to discover silver as a medium. It would be under the auspices of the Goldsmiths’ Company that he became apprenticed to the celebrated silversmith Jocelyn Burton and trained in the traditional Huguenot silversmithing skills, winning an award through the Company for his technical ability.
From his studio in Gloucestershire, a Queen Anne chapel he bought and renovated, Hal has worked on many commissions including “The St George’s House Tree of Wisdom” which was presented to HRH Princess Alexandra on behalf of the Dean and Canons of St George’s Chapel to commemorate HRH Prince Philip’s dedication (the piece is now on permanent display in St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle), the Duke and Duchess of Abercorn and other notable private collections.
He has also completed work for interior designers including Michael Priest, Colefax & Fowler, Oro Bianco, as well as Cullman and Kravis in New York.
Hal’s work has been exhibited at The British Museum, Christie’s London, The David Gill Gallery, Colefax & Fowler, London Masterpiece, The Grosvenor Estate, Remarkable Treasures Lisbon.