Stuart Devlin Designer Goldsmith Silversmith 2018 -Book Review

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I have never written a book review before and the task for this hefty 529 page pictoral history of Devlins work is eased by the beautiful depictions within the pages. To say I’m a Devlin fan is probably an understatement, his work drew me from coin collecting to arts and sculpture and I have many pieces of his work.

This recently released hardcover masterpiece was assembled by Devlin’s wife Carole and her sister Victoria Kate Simkin after a health scare saw Devlin relent on his negative thoughts on publishing a book. The now 86 year old Order of Australia medal recipient and jeweller to the Queen has achieved so much in his life which is all featured with the pages of this book.

The book features chapters on:
Candelabra, candlesticks and centrepieces,
Commissioned works,
Coins, regalia and medals and art medals,
Jewelled surprise eggs, clocks and Objets d’art,
Limited edition silver and commemorative silver,
Innovations and computer-aided design,
and a Biography.

The book begins with a Foreward from Windsor Castle with His Royal Highness Prince Philip Duke of Edinburgh praising the efforts and achievements of Devlin in his lifes work. In each chapter the book carries on documenting much of his work with stunning pictures -it’s almost a Devlin dictionary!

Stuart Devlin is the designer of Australia’s decimal coins first issued in 1966, these were his first coin designs he went on to design coins for over 36 countries! Winning the competition to design Australia’s new coins is said to have transformed Stuart Devlin’s life.

As a Devlin collector this book opened my eyes wider seeing the sheer scale of the items Devlin produced. It’s also help me date and read more about pieces I’ve seen and pieces in my own collection. This book was definitely a must-have for my library. A surprise was that Stuart Devlin designed houses! He did so for the likes of Mick Jagger and H.R.H Princess Margaret. The finale of the book is the extensive biography, more detailed than ever seen before with photos of his private life too.

This publication has a recommended retail price of £75 or $225AUD but I was able to pick up my copy for half that price. Overall this is the most detailed and concise compilation of his work that has gone to print.

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