I have a Greek father and so was familiar with the legend of the evil eye from an early age. It was common for me to see new born babies dressed with an eye pendant to protect them from negative vibes from alleged well-wishers :0
Roman Mosaic featuring the Evil Eye
In many cultures, there is a belief that some people have the power to send evil vibes in order to cause harm or misfortune to to those they they are envious of or dislike. Yikes!
Talismans created to protect against the ‘evil eye’ are also frequently called evil eyes. The concept is widely used and recognised across many tribes, cultures, nationalities and religions with early writings appearing in the Old Testament.
The charms and decorations are common sights across Greece, Turkey, Albania, Egypt, India, Iran, Iraq, Lebanon, Morocco, Southern Italy and Afghanistan.
The Hamsa is a palm shaped amulet (of an open right hand) popular throughout the Middle East and North Africa is commonly used in jewellery and wall hangings, also as a sign of protection.
Katrin and Victoria from London based Eyland Jewellery have found the mystique behind these talismans which are also often rich in colour, such an incredible source of inspiration.
Jewellery by Niki de Saint Phalle for Giancarlo Montebello 1967
In the 1960’s, jeweller Giancarlo Montebello did a series of collaborations with artists and the pieces made with surrealist artist Nikki de Saint Phalle provided a starting point for Eyland Collection 5.
The girls also cite art as being a strong source of inspiration, particularly Surrealists like Dali and Man Ray and also Frida Kahlo though she famously once said "They thought I was a surrealist but I wasn’t. I never painted dreams. I painted my own reality.”
Katrin and Victoria took the idea a little more literally with painted nails on hand pieces and development of their eye and safety pin styles.
Theatre set by Dali on the stage of the Theatre Royale de la Monnaie in Brussels, 1962
Jewellery by Salvador Dali
Claude Necklace by Eyland Jewellery
Mobile by Alexander Calder, 1960
Alice Earrings by Eyland Jewellery
All pieces in this collection are named after their favourite surrealist artists.
Contemporary art is also an inspiration for them like this incredible embroidered photography by Chilean born artist Jose Romussi.
Their love of contemporary art and imagery keeps the mood of Eyland modern. It’s not too vintage. Not too boho. A very clever approach to an ancient idea.
Most of the pieces are painted with colourful enamel and many are decorated with a very subtle use of Swarovski crystals.
All of the jewellery pieces are based in brass then coated in 9CT Yellow, Rose or White Gold.
Eyland Jewellery is available exclusively in Australia at THEA BASILIOU.
Shop the collection here.