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Billy Prendergast

Billy Prendergast

Billy Prendergast is a jewelry designer and metals artist from West Falls, NY. Prendergast earned his BFA from Buffalo State College in 2017. His work was recently featured in a solo exhibition, Mandatory Fun, at Project 308 Gallery, as well as the 2017 Art in Craft Media exhibition at the Burchfield Penney. [1]

Prendergast has dual purposes when designing his jewelry: He wants his pieces to be utilitarian and interesting, while at the same time asking the wearer or audience to interact with the piece. To do this, Prendergast explains, “I often try to incorporate movement or humor as a way to push my work beyond simply being jewelry. Humor works to emotionally invest the viewer, while movement provides literal feeling. When successful, these two themes serve to provoke a response.”

He continues, “When seeking to include a mechanism or joke, it is crucial that both the craftsmanship and the idea are executed perfectly. If the construction of a piece is not done so that the movement is not a clean motion, then the piece must be repaired, or even remade. Likewise, humor cannot be too overt, or the piece would be seen as heavy handed as the most unwieldy brooch. Sometimes simplicity is the answer. This balancing act of idea and function in not an easy one, but there is enjoyment in the process—and hopefully—the finished work.” [2]

[1] Billy Prendergast, “Resume,” Burchfield Penney Artist File. 

[2] Billy Prendergast, “Artist Statement,” Burchfield Penney Artist File.