1840 Journal

Meet the artisans, discover their expertise, and share their passion.


Making art shine.

With her eponymous line of jewellery, Anne Dahl blurs the fluid line between art, craftsmanship, and fashion. “I really love the industrial process of jewellery making, and how gritty and dirty it is, but how kind of beautiful and shiny the finished product becomes,” the designer points out. In her work, the creative process is as interesting as the finished pieces we're able to wear. “I'm involved in all aspects of it from start to finish,” says Anne, who works from her studio in Ottawa.

“It’s something that I really take my time with, and I think about how people will be wearing a piece in their everyday.”  

The artist's jewellery pieces are primarily made of metal, and she works mostly with silver. As ideas flow, not much is premeditated in her creative process. “There are many different ways in which I start to create,” Anne explains. “Sometimes I start with a design and sketches, but sometimes the metal takes me somewhere different. I like to start with the matter and not have a preconceived idea of what I want it to be. It just takes me places.” This approach is absolutely in line with the way she thinks. “I take a lot of inspiration from conceptual and ephemeral art. It's always captivated me. I think about that a lot when I make jewellery,” she says. “One thing that has fascinated me is how conceptual art really pushes the boundaries of what it means to be connected with something that you wear, the intimacy between the body and the metal and everything in between that.” 

Returning from a long trip, Anne began to study jewellery design and silversmithing thanks to the encouragement of a friend and fellow jewellery maker. “I took a class and I absolutely fell in love with it,” she recalls. Her studies led her to Indonesia, where she continued her training in silversmithing, and then to Germany, where she worked with stone sculpture. While studying in Nova Scotia, her degree primarily focused on jewellery and conceptual art with a specialization in gallery work. With her jewellery line, the designer is aiming for something accessible and commercial. “Do I have to decide between one or the other?” the artist asks herself. “I think I do a little bit of both,” she says.

The uncommon beauty of Anne Dahl's creations appeals to a wide audience. “It's for anyone, women, men, and non-binary folks,” the designer tells us. Since its launch, her jewellery line has garnered the interest of many. “Even people who don't wear jewellery will see my pieces and think it's something they can wear everyday, and that it's a little different,” she explains.

The remarkable experience of wearing a work of art is available to everyone, although the feeling is bound to be unique for each individual.