Simone ten Hompel

An investigation in mixed metal and techniques

Reader in Metal, and joint studio leader for 'All the Ingredients', senior lecturer on the MA by Project and PhD supervisor.

Simone ten Hompel  

German-born Simone ten Hompel has been working with metal for over forty years, originally as a locksmith she then studied jewellery and silversmithing at the Fachhochschule Düsseldorf, Germany.  It wasn’t until studying in London for an MA at the Royal College of Art however that it became clear that metalwork was her calling. Since then ten Hompel has carved out a distinguished career as one of Britain’s most critically acclaimed craftspeople.

As a practicing metalworker, ten Hompel has contributed to numerous group exhibitions around the world and presented her work in solo exhibitions in the UK and Internationally. She is frequently invited to speak on craft, making and the language or vocabulary of metal and has led a number of collaborative and curatorial projects.

At The Cass, Simone ten Hompel is Reader in Metal and is a studio lead teaching subject specific techniques and theory for jewellery, silversmithing and metal. She is also active as a key member of the supervisory team for MA by Project and supervises a number of PhD students supporting their individual projects and research.

Winner of the Jerwood Prize: Metal in 2005 – the most prestigious prize in British contemporary applied art, and the State of Bavaria award in 2012, IHM, Munich.

Public collections include: Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery; V&A Museum, London; Aberdeen Art Gallery, Scotland; and the Crafts Council Collection, London.


  • Jewellery & Silversmithing BA (Hons)
  • MA by Project


"Metal is my first language and what do you do with language you talk with it? You talk with yourself and what you have experienced... It’s an exploration of process. It’s the ‘what if?’ Then the understanding that comes through making – that is my thinking as much as metal is my language. The act and the material is my thinking..."

Simone ten Hompel’s framework often encompasses the questioning of functionality and invariably results in discovering something new. "I always need to frame something, give myself rules. There is nothing worse than total freedom."

Beyond this conversation with her material, making and ‘thinking through making’ she has been involved over the years in a series of collaborative projects and symposia. She is frequently invited to give talks about her work or on the subject of craft, making and the language or vocabulary of metal.

‘A Field of Silver: Silver in a Field’ 2002, was a collaboration that literally involved Silversmiths working in a field, bringing the thinking of the twenty-first century makers to the fore by their displacement from the convenience of the workshop. The resulting works where shown in a series of exhibitions and the entire body of work was bought by Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery. Other events and exhibitions range from ‘the Everyday’ 2006 and ‘Completed – Uncompleted’ with accompanying symposia. Most recently ten Hompel was the Convenor of ‘Setting the Scene: The Symposium’, on 29 November 2013 at the James Hockey Gallery.

Expertise areas

Metalwork, silversmithing, jewellery, applied arts and crafts-related issues. Research methods appropriate to jewellery and metalwork. Collaborative and participative practice, and well-being.

PhD theses supervised by Simone ten Hompel

PhDs completed: 
  • Orrapavadee Serewiwattana, The tin chok textile and weaving tradition of Mae Chaem, Thailand (2015)
  • Min Sun Kim, Jewellery and emotional attachment: an investigation through creative practice (2015)
PhDs in progress: 
  • Won Jeong Choi, Beneficial contemporary Korean jewellery: an investigation through creative practice
  • Peta Bush, Therapeutic Jewellery: Designing people-centric devices for wellbeing
  • Gina Pierce, A Methodology for Working with Archives to Develop A Textile and Surface Design Collection, Using the Parker Knoll Textiles as a test case
  • Mary-Jane Opie, The study of the emotional inter-relationship between humans/dogs, how it is represented in art since 1800, and new ways in which it might be presented.

Recent Exhibitions

2013 ‘Setting the Scene: New Landscapes in Craft’ Crafts Study         Centre, UCA Farnham

2013 ‘The Formative Logic: The Utility and Expression in Contemporary Crafts’ Cheongju International Craft Biennale, Main Exhibition2, Cheongju, South Korea

2013 ‘Mit der Zeit Gehen’ Silberschmieden- Internationale Standpunkte, Gallerie Rosemarie Jäger, Hochheim [D]

2012 ‘Meister der Moderne’ 64 International Treat fair Munich [D]

2012 Gallery Marzee at IHM, Munich

2011 ‘Collect’ Crafts Council Art Fair, Saatchi Gallery, London

2011 ‘Complete or Uncompleted’ Cass Gallery, LMet Uni London     

2010/11 ‘Multiples’, Gallery S O, London

2010 'The Stuff of Memory’ Contemporary Applied Arts, London


[italics indicates solo exhibitions]



Postgraduate Research Supervision

Simone ten Hompel welcomes enquiries and applications for MPhil/PhD research in these areas of expertise:

  • metalwork
  • silversmithing
  • jewellery
  • applied arts
  • crafts-related issues. 
  • research methods appropriate to metalwork and jewellery
  • collaborative and participative practice
  • design and making in relation to wellbeing


For general information about postgraduate research at London Metropolitan University, please visit our research section.

General enquiries about postgraduate research in the Sir John Cass school of Art, Architecture and Design should be addressed to Lewis Jones, the School research degrees coordinator and emailed to

Research portfolio


2003 - mixed metals


By Simone ten Hompel