One of the reasons that Gabor Nagy of Gaboratory always stood out in mind as the greatest silver-smith of his generation was his ability to capture the essence of animals. Not necessarily anatomically accurate, but certainly well observed his designs came from growing up with a veterinary surgeon as a father. Japan too has a stunning history of animal carvings in the form of Netsuke and is through both of these great influences that Solitary Goat arrives on the silver scene.
As a relative new-comer to the commercial mainstream, the main-collection is relatively small but I have been following the designer for years and it has been wonderful to see which designs he has selected from his quite considerable output to put into mass-production. His talent is obvious at first glance but don’t for one second think that there is anything simple about his designs.
Solitary Goat does not hide behind the modern trappings of coatings and stone paving, instead his silver is brought to life by careful curation of the dark patina of silver and selective polishing – not to mention acute attention to detail and awareness of his subjects. As a designer he approaches the skin of a rhino and feathers of an eagle with complete different tools and techniques, but yet they are clearly by the same man – and it is that somewhat indefinable essence that just forces this brand stand out from the crowd and on to my fingers.
The majority of Solitary Goat’s works are absolutely huge by the way! I don’t think you would want to wear more than one piece at a time, especially as that might obscure some of the detail around the band of the ring. It is perhaps that ability to draw your eye around the ring that reminds me of the key aesthetics of netsuke. Also his work does work quite well in brass so if you are after something slightly lighter (and cheaper) with a nice antique feel then that is also an option to consider.
Surprisingly Solitary Goat is yet to secure a shop stockist yet, but with the buzz around the brand in magazines at the moment that is a situation that is going to change, and soon.
As a complete antidote to the overdone motifs of luxury gothic I am just so glad for the presence of Solitary Goat in the world of silver, it reminds me why I fell in love with this material in the first place.