Dress in Context

Research Centre

Dr Sian Hindle

Research interests

Research interests focus on jewellery and identity, and how jewellery is used to communicate ideas about the wearer’s role and their position in society.  Because of jewellery’s links both to cultural practices (through custom and wear) and to family and friends (through gifting and exchange), it carries a broad range of meanings and often evokes powerful memories.  Doctoral research (due for completion in 2019) seeks to establish a much-needed theory-base for what is an under-researched field.  Sian’s creative practice centres around drawing, and this is also key to her doctoral research, which uses drawing to examine the role that jewellery plays in articulating aspects of identity.  Women participating in the study are asked to reflect on both their ‘live’ and their ‘retired’ jewellery, and contrasts between the two are revealing insights into how identity is shaped by the adornments that we wear.  

Sian Hindle leads the MA Jewellery and Related Products course at Birmingham City University’s School of Jewellery, and she has a background in both English Literature and Contextual Studies.  In her teaching and research, Sian is interested in examining the full arc of jewellery’s production and use, and in exploring what it means to adorn the body.  She convenes the School of Jewellery’s Talking Practice public lecture series and, alongside the Vittoria Street Gallery, helps to co-ordinate events and symposiums to ensure that students, and the broader jewellery community, benefit from debate and discussion with influential figures and rising stars. 

Conference presentations and articles

‘Looking at jewellery; wearing the other’, at Culture, Costume and Dress Conference, BCU (2019)

‘Wearing Jewellery, Making Meaning: Jewellery at the boundary of the self’, at Culture, Costume and Dress Conference, BCU (2017) and 20:20 Visions Conference, Association of Contemporary Jewellers (2017)

‘Drawn Between’, at Tracing the Bridge Conference, Drawing Research Network, Loughborough University (2016)

‘That Weird Attraction/Repulsion Thing: On performing art jewellery’, Art Jewelry Forum (2016): https://artjewelryforum.org/that-weird-attractionrevulsion-thing-on-performing-art-jewelry

‘On Performing Art Jewellery’ (with Colley, R and Boultwood, A) in Annals of Leisure Research 2016, http://www.tandfonline.com DOI:10.1080/11745398.2016.1151368

‘Embodying Jewellery: New approaches for capturing the wearer’s experience’ at Jewellery Conference 2015, mima/Teeside University

‘Strange Pleasures’ – Research Conference, BCU (2014)

Research seminars and symposiums

‘Brooches, Bodies and beef: Identity play and corporeal style’ at Birmingham Fashion and Textile Research Group Colloquium, BCU (2015)

‘Embodying Jewellery: New approaches for capturing the wearer’s experience’ at Research seminar, BCU (2015)

‘Humanising Objects; Objectifying Human Beings’ at What’s Going on in Fashion? BCU (2015)

‘Drawn’ (with Toni Mayner) at Talking Practice, BCU (2015)

‘Jewellery at the Boundary of the Self’ at Talking Practice, BCU (2014)

Exhibitions and performances

‘Ply’ (a Dual Works collaboration, with Zoe Robertson and Steve Snell), durational performance as part of Accumulations, Whitworth Gallery, Manchester (2016), http://www.accumulationsproject.com/dual-works/

‘Inflection’, poster presentation/performance at Research Matter(s) 2016, BCU

‘Subjective Embodiment: Jewellery at the boundary of the self’, performance at Tale your Idea Conference, BCU (2015)

Public engagement events

Chaired careers seminar at International Jewellery London: ‘Birmingham, a city of 1000 trades’ (2018)

‘Draw Think’ – Pecha Kucha Birmingham (2015)

Blogs regularly about research and teaching at sianhindle.wordpress.com


‘A Review of ‘Six Artists Celebrate Enid Marx and the British Folk Art Collection’, Compton Verney, 17 Mar – 16 Dec 2018’ in Journal of Visual Art Practice 2019 www.tandfonline.com doi: 10.1080/14702029.2019.1591706

‘A Review of ‘Between Spaces’, Creative Hinckley Gallery, The Atkins, Hinckley, 19 September–16 October 2014’ in Journal of Craft Research 2015 www.intellectbooks.co.uk doi: 10.1386/crre.6.1.123_7

Dr Sian Hindle

School of Jewellery | Vittoria Street 0121 331 6469 and St Pauls 0121 331 6478 


Twitter | @vespersian