MUN JEW ICH ELLE WE R EK â&#x20AC;&#x2DC; 2 Y 0 CURRE OBSESS NT ION
GEM Z TALENT ACCELERATOR PROGRAMME BY CURRENT OBSESSION
CO is looking for hidden Gem Zs to join their talent accelerator programme! Building a future-facing creative practice is a challenge for many young artists and designers. Exciting new opportunities may present themselves after gradu ation, but there are also likely to be new hurdles, and it can be difficult to maintain momentum. To support a new generation of young makers as they develop their voices, CO and its partners are investing in a talent accelerator programme. Gem Z will run throughout 2020 and will conclude with a showcase at OBSESSED! Jewellery Festival 2021.
The main goal of the Gem Z programme is to foster relationships between young creatives, cultural institutions and the industry. Participants will be provided with: remote tutoring, workshops, production partnerships, and assistance in showcasing and communicating their commissioned works. CO is looking for a group of promising makers with exemplary practices to help shape the future of jewellery. Are you a recent graduate* whose practice involves jewellery or body-related work? Please feel free to send in your application!
* Applicants must have graduated from a Bachelor’s or Master’s programme, or have independently and actively produced www.current-obsession.com/platform/gem-z/
work in the past five years.
David Bielander, python, 2011, photo: Sushilla Kouwen | www.sushilla.info
THE JEWELLERY O C LLECTION OF CODA MUSEUM APELDOORN
The Netherlands www.coda-apeldoorn.nl/museum
Jewellery from Aotearoa New Zealand Jane Dodd, Parekareka III, 2020
We were all set for FRAME Internationale Handwerksmesse, when a little pandemic happened… So we are celebrating right here at home, our world class jewellers that didn’t quite make it to Munich.
12 Mar——1 Apr 2020
THE NATIONAL IN MUNICH AT HOME Kelly McDonald Moniek Schrijer Lisa Walker Craig McIntosh Karl Fritsch Vanessa Arthur Warwick Freeman Jane Dodd Octavia Cook Shelley Norton Debbie Adamson Areta Wilkinson Elfi Spiewack Becky Bliss thenational.co.nz
THE DANNER ROTUNDE – THE JEWELRY SPACE AT PINAKOTHEK DER MODERNE OPEN FROM 14TH MARCH 2020
40 years Françoise van den Bosch Foundation Support contemporary jewellery makers and help to create exposure, debate and exchange. Join us as a friend. francoisevandenbosch.nl
The internationally recognised award for jewellery makers with a unique voice. Acquiring work by emerging talent and inviting young makers for a residency. With a unique collection, housed at the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam. Through meetings, symposia, exhibitions and publications we create an audience. We’ve been promoting contemporary jewellery since 1980.
MUNICH JEWELLERY WEEK This Munich Jewellery Week Paper 2020 is our first publication
to join, let’s make the best of it! Last week, with facemasks now
that lives exclusively online.
a defining symbol of the coronavirus outbreak, a jeweller friend suggested decorating them with Swarovski crystals for Munich
In light of the latest headlines, among hundreds of concerned
Jewellery Week – a typical jeweller’s can-do attitude! While the
emails from visitors, it became clear that there were new levels
global situation is indeed very serious and deserves our utmost
of distrust and fear associated with international travel.
attention, putting rhinestones on protective wear might be one way to brighten up a day... or a week!
Due to multiple cancellations, we are now back to about 63 confirmed events, just like when we first started making a map
We hope you enjoy your MJW, whether you will actually walk the
in 2013. With the Week constantly growing, and more and more
streets of Munich, follow @munichjewelleryweek on Instagram,
international visitors flocking to Munich, this year was supposed
or join some of the events that were ‘transplanted’ to other loca-
to be the biggest to date – 120 events. But we have to face the
tions: The National in New Zealand, Galerie Beyond and MAD walk
crisis, and it will surely be a different kind of Munich Jewellery
in Belgium, etc.
Week, more local, than international, less crowded and less noisy. With many gallerists and collectors cancelling their trips, who will
If in Munich, come by at our MJW HQ on Adalbertstrasse 23
be our audience? We will have to wait and see.
for a chat!
While the choice whether or not to travel to Munich, is a respon-
sibility of each individual visitor, for those of you who decided
THE CURRENT OBSESSION TEAM
FOUNDING EDITOR & CREATIVE DIRECTOR
MUNICH JEWELLERY WEEK PRESS
Jewellery by: Margherita Chinchio
Leanna Thomas, Nalé PR
Lauren Eckert, Vanessa de Gruijter,
92Y center, CODA Museum, Die Neue Sammlung, Françoise van
Suzanne van Leeuwen, Simon Marsiglia
den Bosch Foundation, Galerie Beyond, Galerie Door, Galerie
Noel Guyomarch, Munich Creative Business Week, The National,
PUBLISHED BY CURRENT OBSESSION
New York City Jewelry Week, Oh My Blue, Parcours Bijoux,
ART DIRECTOR & GRAPHIC DESIGNER
For advertising opportunities and other enquiries,
please get in touch via firstname.lastname@example.org
No part of this publication may be copied and/or
reproduced without the written permission of the copyright holder
EDITORIAL INTERNSHIP Poppy Monk, Niamh Paul
SPECIAL THANKS Elisabeth Kieser, Amore Bar team, Florian Weischberger,
COVER STORY EDITORIAL
Dr. Petra Hölscher
Decolonise Contemporary Jewellery
Tarot: Future Jewel Readings
Travelling to Another Planet
By Vanessa de Gruijter
Decolonise Contemporary Jewellery
My fascination for museums of world cultures and the stories attached to them was instigated as a child; I made my poor father take me to the local ethnographic museum almost every month. This fascination grew into critical reflection after finding out as an academic student and intern at the Afrika Museum that there was another, negative, side to collecting, presenting and valuing the objects on show in these museums. Ever since, I have tried to be critical about my own role as someone who has a love for the collections of museums of world cultures and works with them professionally.
As a curator I feel a great responsibility to tell the ‘right’ story. But I am very aware that it is only to a very small extent my story to tell, if it is at all. And who decides what is ‘right’ anyway? Should that be me? Who am I to talk about objects that are connected to hurt, loss, genocide or racism? Or about how the people connected to these objects might have overcome these experiences, or about their fight to do so? It is a constant search for balance between wanting to tell the stories attached to these objects and trying to avoid overruling and overtalking their rightful owners.
Chequita Nahar, Switi Watra,
The jewellery of Chequita
Areta Wilkinson, Hine-Ahua
Her jewellery makes a
necklace, silver, chinese
Nahar is generally inspired
and Huiarei, 24 carat gold
contemporary study of
wood, oak, cotton, acryl
by Surinamese culture and
(Tai Poutini West Coast),
taonga; precious tangible
its rituals and customs. Form
22 carat gold, legal ribbon,
treasures such as hei tiki and
and material are chosen
muka, Photo: Studio La
intangible treasures such
on the basis of various
as Maori knowledge. With
influences that clearly show
‘There are hierarchies of objects too, just as there are hierarchies of people, and of continents.’ 1
The topic of decolonisation has been at the centre of international debates for many years. These debates have focused on how we – the inhabitants of coloniser nations – reproduce colonial thinking and behaviour within politics, education, culture and the arts. In the fields of art and design, these age-old colonial narratives are reflected in the Eurocentric, hierarchical classifications of difference that are still very present, and which have led to white and male makers being disproportionately represented at the institutional level.2 The contemporary jewellery field has largely stayed out of these debates, being small enough to hide behind the bigger fields of art and design. Until last year (2019), during Munich Jewellery Week, when Tiff Massey received the Susan Beech MidCareer Artist Grant. In her acceptance speech, Massey, an interdisciplinary artist based in Detroit, rightfully criticised the lack of diversity in the contemporary jewellery field. Additionally, Current Obsession hosted a Social Club on intersectionality, investigating the role of education and asking who is represented in shows and by galleries, and who comes to and participates in events like Munich Jewellery Week.3
her jewellery she connects
that Nahar grew up in two
Whakapapa plays a major
with both Maori history and
cultures. To Nahar, a piece
role in the work of contem-
contemporary Maori identity.
of jewellery is both a symbol
porary jewellery designer and
The work unites customary
and a repository of magical
artist Areta Wilkinsons (New
Maori adornment that is still
powers, with a bead often
Zealand). The term includes
produced today, and the
serving as the focal point.
in addition to a person's line-
histories and practices of
Beads play an important role
age, the stories and myths
New Zealand contemporary
both in Surinamese culture
that belong to the origins of
and in the life of the maker.
Ngai Tahu Maori ancestors and finding relationships.
Parallel to the concerns voiced by Tiff Massey, there has been a growing interest in anthropology and material culture studies in regard to contemporary jewellery. Students and jewellery makers have always been inspired by adornment belonging to ‘the other’: talismans, amulets, and masks to name a few examples. Art historian Marjan Unger was one of the first in the jewellery field to incorporate an anthropological perspective on adornment into her work, arguing for a wider, more contextual view of jewellery.4 Anthropology – in relation to things – investigates the social functions of objects and the networks of cultural
values that they are part of, asking what they are used for and what this might say about the culture and the people who make and use them. It views art and design as expressions of culture and the physical objects produced in these fields (paintings, chairs, necklaces, etc) as material culture: objects used by humans that reflect their culture. At first sight, decolonisation, diversity and an interest in anthropology may seem unrelated. However, discussions about diversity and inclusion are closely connected to the historic interest of the Western art and design fields in the material cultures of others, and this needs to be addressed. Understanding the lack of representation of people with diverse cultural backgrounds in the field of jewellery cannot be explained without understanding the historic power dynamics between ‘the West and the rest’. It’s a history of colonialism, the development of art and design theories, and the rise of museums with decorative art, fine art and ethnographic collections – collections shaped by discourses of blatant racism that emphasised the differences between the colonised ‘other’ and their European and North American colonisers. Ever since the beginning of colonialism, a strong divide has existed between the ways in which non-Western, so-called ‘ethnographic’ objects have been collected, viewed, presented and valued as opposed to those objects deemed to be part of Western ‘design’ or ‘art’.5 The Western artistic tradition is believed to have originated in classical antiquity and developed through the Middle Ages and the Renaissance to the modern world.6 In the nineteenth century, theories of evolution were used to claim that, similar to different animal species, different human societies – or 'races' – had evolved, and, according to this racist theory, some were more evolved than others. According to this logic, the inhabitants of the industrialized West had left a primitive state far behind and had reached the peak of human development, as opposed to the colonised peoples of Africa, Asia, the Americas and the Pacific Islands, who were seen as ‘primitive’. The objects they made – coined ‘ethnographic objects’ as soon as they were ‘discovered’ by colonial officials, missionaries, collectors and anthropologists and subsequently shipped to Europe – were looked at through a Eurocentric gaze. They were seen as less developed than and inferior to those produced by ‘advanced’ Western art and design. Simultaneously, these people were exoticised, seen as ‘in touch with nature, pure, intuitive, traditional and timeless’, not yet corrupted by modern and industrialised life, and were presented as primitives living in the past. Art was believed to be an area of great achievement for the ‘evolved’ European civilisation and was used as an instrument by which to distinguish between ‘us’ and ‘them’.
Pati Tyrell, stills from film Fagogo
’Tyrell explores indigenous epistemologies of gender and sexuality, using Moana craft practices and adornments made
Pati Tyrell is a Samoan interdisciplinary artist who explores
from both traditional and urban materials. In Fagogo, a work
the intersections and experiences of Pacific queer identity
that the artist frames as being restorative, Tyrell adorns his
through photography, moving image and performance.
collaborators to aid in the retelling of Samoan fables or fagogo.
Pati is a co-founder of the Pacific Queer Arts Collective
He uses our understanding of gender, and the way in which
FAFSWAG who pioneered the Auckland Vogue scene and
we place gender onto traditional adornment, to reclaim the
continues to mobilise the local vogue community as founding
oracle status that gender and sexually diverse people once
Father of House Aitu.
had’ Lana Lopesi in the book Crafting Aotearia.
Máret Ánne Sara and Matt Lambert, Loaded - keep hitting our
The collar is made of the jaws of reindeers that Sara collect-
Jaws, jaws of the reindeer skulls, 2018.
ed during the years of her brother’s legal battle against the Norwegian government to protect the family’s reindeer and
Sara invited Lambert after finding a connection through a
rights. The work promotes a conversation around sustainable
conviction for socio-cultural sustainability as well as
practices of indigenous peoples.
minority comradery between indigeneity and queerness.
Museums played an important role in reproducing these narrow colonial narratives of ‘the other’; they were spaces for the consumption of the exotic in which the general public – but also artists, designers and craftspeople – came into contact with non-Western objects. Objects made in very different cultural contexts to those of Europe were transformed and appropriated into ‘exotic’ things, stripped of all original context and meaning and used as inspiration for artists and designers who were often connected to national industries that would go on to manufacture mass-produced commodities inspired by these objects. This intensified the West’s fascination with exotic styles and influenced fashions. Even today, this colonial hierarchical classification of differences is central to the Western perception of work made by white European and North American makers, in comparison to the work made by people with different cultural backgrounds. Whether subconsciously or not, distinctions are still made based on old hierarchies: work made by ‘us’, and work made by ‘them’. The fascination among Western artists and designers for the material culture of ‘others’ – oftentimes objects from colonial collections on view in ethnographic museums – is a remnant of our colonial past. Many of the adornments that we love so much are historical pieces (colonial ethnographic
Honey B Gold is a jewellery and accessories brand founded by Natalia Durazo (U.S.A). Her jewellery references classic hip-hop fashion, vintage Hollywood glamour and West-Coast ‘Chicana’ (Mexican American) culture. Big chains and gold bamboo earrings are staples of her jewellery line. The brand creates space for perspectives and narratives that are not represented in mainstream media and fashion.
collections always are) comparable to historic jewellery found in museum collections such as the Rijksmuseum. However, instead of just labelling them ‘historic’, they are oftentimes considered ‘traditional’, ‘artisanal’, ‘authentic’ or ‘spiritual’, and seen as representative of primitive ways of life, or are imagined to still be produced in some ancient, unchanging way. In the process, the contemporary descendants of the people that produced these historical objects are ignored, some of whom are artists that are very actively involved in the contemporary production of their culture through art and design.
Kenneth Williams Jr., Homage to my Icon: Charles Loloma,
Kenneth Willams Jr., (Seneca/Arapaho) is a leading contem
Pictorial Bolo Tie, mix of glass beads, Lone Mountain
porary beadwork artist in U.S.A / North-America. He is
turquoise, Sleeping Beauty turquoise, coral, human hair,
descended from generations of prominent beadwork artists
sterling silver, leather, 2015. Accession nr V.2016.25, by
and refined his traditional knowledge through his studies at
kind permission of National Museums Scotland.
the Institute of American Indian Arts. He is inspired by his ancestry and pop culture and combines a contemporary aesthetic with centuries of beadworking tradition.
A ‘ global inclusive perspective may involve rethinking the term jewellery since the term references “Western” practices of making wearable items and thus involves Western values and concepts’ 9 We are fascinated by work made by contemporary Maori or Native American makers, for example, but only on our terms; too often, work such as this is either not considered ‘art’ (too ‘traditional’, ‘artisanal’, ‘street’ or ‘kitsch’) or is dismissed for not being ‘authentic’ enough to conform to our ideas about ‘ethnographic art’. But it serves well as inspiration for the art made by white people with art degrees, of course. We take inspiration from the work of these artists without considering our colonial relationship to them, all the while ignoring the work’s original context and in doing so following the age-old script of exoticising the lives of the people that made, and make, the objects that we like so much.
Sione Monu, Jermaine
Sione's portraits are an experimental exploration of
Sione Monu is an artist of Tongan descent living in New
nimamea’a tuikakala, the Tongan art of flower garland
Zealand, and working across Australia-New Zealand-Tonga.
design. Sione uses florals from each individual wearers
He works across the mediums of photography, moving-
home and surroundings, so that each is specific, inspired
image, fashion and adornment, performance and drawing.
by a particular family member or friend.
However, we can no longer ignore our Eurocentric gaze. It is painfully clear that Eurocentric ideas about art and design are not representative of the diversity of cultural expressions that exist. These old colonial narratives acknowledge neither the diversity of contemporary global jewellery cultures – from Sami to Maori, Surinamese, Turkish and others – nor different understandings of what art and design are or should be. For example, though it is individual expression that is emphasised in Western art, for many Maori and Native North American artists the social value of art and design is just as important. We might also think of the Sami artistic production of duodji, which, in its reflection of a holistic view of life and culture, moves beyond narrow definitions of art. Besides differences in cultural values and beliefs there are discrepancies in what is considered jewellery. How to categorise headdresses, body armour, hip-hop grills, hair decoration, nail art and other wearable objects that cross over to dress, performance or fashion? A globally inclusive perspective may involve rethinking the term ‘jewellery’, since the term references ‘Western practices of making wearable items and thus involves Western values and concepts.’ The use of the more inclusive term ‘adornment’, as a ‘meta category of wearable objects’, may be the way forward.8 Marjan Unger was right to argue for including anthropology among the range of perspectives from which to discuss jewellery. It has enriched the discussion and has kick-started critical thinking about diversity and inclusion. However, clear distinctions need to be made between inclusive contemporary theories and outdated colonial views of how design and art might be connected to the
field of anthropology. The anthropological understanding of ‘jewellery as cultural expression’ offers an opportunity to decentre European and North American contemporary jewellery design and undermine colonial forms of binary thinking. This standpoint opens up the field to a multiplicity of contemporary jewellery makers, voices and perspectives from across the world and may be a tool with which to decolonise the contemporary jewellery field. Decolonising contemporary jewellery doesn’t mean we cannot love the art and design objects, historical or contemporary, on view in world museums. I personally could never imagine not being amazed by them. But, like people, they need to be treated with respect for their cultural and historical contexts and be acknowledged for what they are: equal to Western cultural expressions and imbedded in rich networks of cultural value.
Love Letter To Fundi
modern day interpretation of Zulu Love Letters.
in: L’Internationale, June 2015. Accessed through:
The Herd by Mbali Mthethwa is a brand inspired by and
They are a Contemporary Traditional Community.
pays homage to the iconic beading culture pioneered
Model: @k.skits Shot by: @lunga_ntila
and mastered by Zulu women. Their pieces are a
Creative Direction by: @nataliepaneng_
1 Clémentine Deliss, ‘Collecting Life’s Unknowns’,
2 A comprehensive study reveals that 85 percent of artists featured in permanent collections are white, 87 percent are men. https://nmwa.org/advocate/get-facts 3 Moderated by Ashley Khirea Wahba / Speakers: Leslie Boyd, Kalkidan Hoex, Roxanne Reynolds, Namita Gupta Wiggers. 4 Marjan Unger, Suzanne van Leeuwen, Jewellery Matters, Rotterdam (nai010 publishers), 2017. 5 Rosa te Velde, Vanessa de Gruijter, ‘NMVW Design Museum’, 2019, not published. 6 The binary terms West and non-West categorise people and cultures and emphasize a hierarchy in which the Western world is regarded the norm against which other people and cultures are measured. It is not always possible to avoid the terms but it is better to specify where possible. 7 Indigenous practice is layered and meaningful, and I realize I don’t do it right by giving this short description 8 Damien Skinner and Kevin Murray, Place & Adornment:
Nikiwe Dlova, mask and hairstyle
A History of Contemporary Jewellery in Australia and New 9
’Braiding is more than a hairstyle, it is art. In some cultures it represents strengthening of mind, body and spirit. It
Zealand, Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 2014.
Nikiwe Dlova (South-Africa) is a creative whose inter-
is also a cultural tradition that cuts across racial, social,
Quote by Damien Skinner and Kevin Murray
ests are fashion, music and hair art. Her blog about hair
economic and geographic lines. This work represents the
expressions and street culture grew into hosting hair
evolution of braids as an art form through haistyling, a
art exhibitions and creating hairstyles and headpieces.
headpieces and a mask.’
and the global body. She co-curated the exhibition Jewellery –
Nondumiso Qba Nkosi, BEDOO headpiece, granite beads,
creative ingenuity demonstrated by African craftsman-
made by, worn by (2017–2019) for the National Museum of World
photographer: Travys Owen
ship. Almost every culture in Africa has beads embedded
About the Author: VANESSA DE GRUIJTER is a design historian, artist and curator in the extended field of applied arts with a focus on adornment. Her research includes the themes of decolonisation, object agency, consumption, appropriation
Cultures (Tropenmuseum, Museum Volkenkunde, Afrika Museum
in its ways, whether as adornment, for healing, or as
and Wereldmuseum, The Netherlands) and researched its vast
Nondumiso Qba Nkosi (South-Africa) considers herself
identifiers or symbols of social status. For Nondumiso Qba
jewellery collection. She recently researched decolonisation
a modern African artist and craftswoman. Her bead-
Nkosi, values such as Ubuntu, respect and craftsmanship
in relation to design for a series of workshops for the Research
work is her contribution to an ancient African heritage
connect all Africans and are part of her identity as
Centre of Material Culture (Leiden, The Netherlands). She is
of craftsmanship. The Bedoo headpieces are a physical
thesis advisor at MAFAD Maastricht and curator of contempo
representation of the values of patience, dedication and
rary jewellery at CODA Museum (The Netherlands).
Simon Marsiglia in conversation with Alexander Blank
When I initiated a conversation with Alexander Blank, I had in mind that we would discuss the use of fiction as a strategy for making. The conversation left me with a lot of thoughts about why I am interested in fiction and how other artists connect it to jewellery.
It’s a tool that can be used to create your own context for a piece of jewellery, even when it is presented in a white cube gallery. Instead of pushing a complex concept onto the viewer, you can give a suggestion in the shape of a story. I think there are a lot of similarities between the things I make and props for movies.
ALEXANDER BLANK (AB)
Do you first write or first make the pieces? Or do they go hand in hand?
I like the idea of letting the objects build a narrative, but here you had the objects first, and then came fiction? Or did you plan it all from the beginning?
The first object came more or less without a story, but with further pieces it developed more and more into a fiction. This was very joyful and it gave me a way to play and narrate like a kid. It grew into the process organically. I believe that jewellery and art are languages in their own right, and it’s always difficult to do a better job with words, but I think in fiction lies a great way of trying to do just that, because it’s trying to find words and not knowing. As a kid I used to create stories by combining the things I knew with the things I imagined, which is to be considered fiction. It created a way of seeing the world in that moment, and I think that hasn’t changed. One still creates the world with what they know or imagine, whether truths, facts, fakes, or fiction.
Alexander Blank, Jimmy, brooch, 2013
SIMON MARSIGLIA (SM) Recently I have been working with how we present ourselves online and I have ended up slipping into the world of fiction. I think fiction provides a levelling element when it comes to looking at jewellery and art in general, meaning that it makes for a common starting point: everyone has had a fairy tale read to them at some point.
A ‘ s a kid I used to create stories by combining the things I knew with the things I imagined, which is to be considered fiction’
For now I start with the writing. The only restriction I use is the time period. I could probably sit for weeks thinking about the concept for an object. But if I put a shorter time limit on it and just try to write a story - in order to produce something I have to fully immerse myself in the fiction, almost as if I am experiencing it as one of the characters. I think the writing also works as a sort of a decoy, so you are actually fooling yourself into creating objects rather than forcing it. Objects seem to appear more naturally because they appear within the environment of the fiction.
What I personally like about fiction is that it gives a simple way of weaving in a lot of content from different sources (nonsense, theory, gossip, autobiographical stuff, fantasy, critique, whatever), and it creates a more accessible way of looking into an artist’s mindset, compared to being confronted with tough artist statements that sometimes seem too rejecting or narrow things down so that the pieces cannot hold the statements’ ambitions. Narrative is more open to me and for the pieces, and can, of course, be an art-piece itself; it’s fluid, it can change. One can add, include, rewrite, take it from another perspective – and that´s a great possibility. In my own practice a narrative, like a fable, seemed obvious since the work itself is quite figurative. You can find a YouTube video, Blank Tales, where my pieces talk to each other.
It’s almost as if it’s some kind of semi-fiction we are talking about here, in that it is not purely imagined but is rather about existing things coming to life. Am I right?
I would say yes and no. It´s both purely imagined aspects and existing things that catch me. For example, autobiographical situations or thoughts go in side by side with purely imaginary aspects. In my opinion, both parts get closer to each other. Previously you were using the term ‘props’. May I ask you how you see this term? Because it´s normally used to lower an object’s value, I think. Is there a hierarchy for you when it comes to text and object? Or do they belong together?
Regarding the use of the term ‘props’, let me clarify what I meant. By providing the object with a side order of fiction you can make it come to life. It's like reverse engineering a movie prop – you create the story for the sake of the object. I wouldn’t say there is a hierarchy when it comes to text and object. I’ve been in situations where I’ve started writing a story then made an object and then ended up going back and changing parts of the story because I felt like the object required it.
I looked through some of your work, and your pieces seem to work quite well in images and on social media platforms – in a fun, cosplay kind of way. Are the pieces mainly meant for images on such platforms and for your narrative there? Would you say that it is you in those images?
I like the word ‘cosplay’. I actually used to go to a lot of conventions, and maybe this is the reason why I like so-called ‘props’ and wear them myself when I present them online. I feel like the pieces seem lifeless when presented on a white background, and the only way to change that is to give them a purpose – and in this case the purpose is to give me the feeling of having special abilities. I feel like I can be whoever I want in those pictures,
Alexander Blank, Weather Forecast, brooch, 2019
2020 13 CONVERSATION
Simon & Hansel Tai, Object originating from fiction by
‘I’ve got a fountain on my wrist’ then I can go on imagine what an actual wrist fountain would look like. This could also be considered a type of fiction since I was combining things I knew with things I imagined’
but I would say it is a mixture between the real me and a fictional character. It’s a lot about that freedom you have when it comes to how you present yourself online. I guess we can agree that sci-fi is probably a major interest for us both because it’s much more object-driven than other genres. Objects in sci-fi act like arguments – they place the narrative in another time period or ‘out of this world’ environment.
Of course, the object-driven part of sci-fi is interesting, but I’m more interested in how fiction somehow relates to ‘now’, ‘here’, ‘us’, on this planet. For example, I think it is fascinating that some of the objects shown as examples of top-notch futuristic design in sci-fi movies from the eighties and nineties have quickly become items we use daily today. We are living parts of those sci-fi narratives right now. Some of the main topics in sci-fi now are the destruction of the planet, society at its end, and other dystopian visions of the future. This seems to fit with the prognoses of everyday newsflashes. I think it’s weird that the narration of fiction and reality get closer to each other. There used to be different narratives of the future in sci-fi, but it has now narrowed down to a dystopian/apocalyptic path. Maybe it´s because drama sells better; it’s hopefully not because no-one can seem to imagine a bright colourful future anymore. My interest in a fictional genre or setting is in where fiction and ‘reality’ almost overlap, where you can not exactly say which is which. With some of my jewellery, I use films and stories from the present or my childhood to talk about things that interest me. I analyse the characters a lot – the hero, the villain, the fool, the clown, the loon, etc. Not only as one-sided stereotypes but also in their different representations throughout history and different narratives.
Talking about all these different characters, what immediately comes to mind for me are social media and our online personas. I feel that this is where we practise fiction today.
I’d rather die than waste my time on presenting myself online. I’d rather make jewellery instead! No, just kidding. I quit being on social media platforms like Instagram after having a very shitty situation with the negative elements of it, alongside some other stuff that almost led me to quit everything in ‘jewelleryland’. My trust in these platforms is still not there yet. Not everything lies in your own hands and sometimes you can’t stop things happening, even if you need to. Don´t get me wrong, I’m not too pessimistic about this, I just decided for myself to quit social media or at least to take a much longer break. I think it´s a great thing and it has many options and tools to play with, but it also creates an info hunter/prey situation in that images work as bait for attention and likes, and shares are the measure of their quality. This sensationalisation of everything, no matter banal it is, only lasts for short moments, and I´m happy to not participate anymore. It gives me less stress. I’m more interested in the meeting point between the real person and their online appearance; it sparks more questions for me. It’s more interesting to me to look behind facades rather than to create them, which of course still always happens, but nevertheless I like the not-so-idealised human more. I’m attracted to the down-to-earth version more than the superhuman. Less vanity, less idealisation, less heroism, less fame, less artifice – not none of all of this, just less. In my work Jimmy´z, I use images of social media celebrities and kinda scratch away their serious profiles to find silly cartoon elements under the skin. And with the transparent Shield brooches, I´d rather see a character protected from outside influences. Images are posted for a purpose or in service to some sort of efficiency and I prefer my pieces not be too exploited like this too much. I personally enjoy presenting myself, my pieces and fictions through the old-school format of the exhibition. There is more time for interaction, conversation, etc.
I fell in love with old cartoon losers – Daffy Duck, Wile Coyote, Donald Duck, etc – because they never give up, even when the script is against their plans to succeed. I think this is a great metaphor to put into a piece of jewellery, don’t you?
I think its a great metaphor. Usually when I think about never giving up or, you know, this ‘zero to hero’ kind of storyline I think about rap music. It has all the metaphors for wearing jewellery in combination with turning nothing into something. Before I started to have an interest in fiction a lot of my works originated from song lyrics. I used memorable or outrageous metaphors from songs to imagine what the piece of jewellery described could look like if it actually existed. An example I used in my previous interview with current obsession was the sentence: ’I’ve got a fountain on my wrist’ then I can go on Imagine what an actual wrist fountain would look like. This could also be considered a type of fiction since I was combining things I knew with things I imagined.
I think hip-hop’s ‘nothing into something’ or ‘zero to hero’ narrative is too often told, or perhaps only told, from the winners’ side – maybe in the way any kind of history is told by those that made it, giving only one side of the story. It’s a very capitalistic narration, very predetermined. It’s a story that has been agreed upon for too long. I like the quieter stories from the other guys, about how they stay motivated when fame is not knocking at the doorstep. Maybe it’s a bit naïve, but I love metaphor because it empowers the character of the loser, because they stay motivated; even if the script never lets them succeed, they are still strong and ambitious. Like, it is as if the trying is the success, not the winning, which is always the promoted aim, the golden carrot or whatever.
About the Author: Simon Marsiglia, born in Sweden, will be
You mentioned that the characters in your works have different roles. This is something I have not yet considered: whether or not my fictions need to portray characters in classic roles such as heroes and villains. Maybe you could provide me with a more specific example of characters in your work?
graduating at the Rietveld Academy from Design Department in 2020. He exhibited his work in the group exhibition Non-Stick Nostalgia: Y2K Retrofuturism in Contemporary Jewelry at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York. During Munich Jewellery Week you can see his work at Life Soup, Kreative Quartier, Halle 6, #74 on the map.
Simon Marsiglia, Call 4 action, 2020
2020 15 CONVERSATION
Artwork by Chloé Valorso Text by Lauren Eckert
Tarot: Future Jewel Readings
People can and have told fortunes with many instruments – carved stones, tossed coins, crystal balls – whose materials and designs would not be out of place in a contemporary jewellery exhibition. The patterns in the Tarot correspond to the patterns in all aspects of divination and experience - from minute tea leaves to the vast zodiac calendar or from one individual subconscious to the collective unconscious of an entire art form. In order to divine the future of contemporary jewellery with utmost clarity we must interpret a Tarot deck with illustrations referencing the jewellers who compose our jewellery present. Fortuitously pulled from the deck, individual cards can be arranged in different spreads to emulate those synchronistic patterns that allow a reader to glimpse at portents to come. The arcana and illustrations speak alongside the topics in the spread to describe one’s full fortune. Whether professional psychic or ordinary person, all of the archetypes, pictures, and spreads of Tarot simply better prepare you to look at the cards and hear for yourself the omens whispered by the spirits of the arcana. Read the cards, contemplate their messages, and let the arcana guide you into the future of contemporary jewellery. MARGHERITA CHINCHIO : 3 OF WANDS
achievement. Success in an era of digital
through the windowpane of the Six of
hybrids means unlocking fresh metrics for
LORETTE COLÉ DUPRAT: SIX OF PENTACLES
The Three of Wands is a card that is at peace
accomplishment. Many colours vibrate behind
The Six of Pentacles is full of a giving spirit.
composition they indicate multiple acts of
with the past and full of energy towards ex-
Chinchio’s jewellery but have not materialised
While this card deals with generosity and pros-
generosity that when wrapped around the
ploring the future. The number three indicates
into final forms. The Three of Wands suggests
perity, these things can come in more forms
spirits of its participants create a flow of
combinations such as those within Margherita
an openness to these new models and their
than simply financial. Generosity of emo-
prosperity. If unable to understand a nagging
Chinchio’s jewellery – pieces born from a
tion, time, and information all fall within the
lack, try and give something valuable away.
hybrid of other designs found on social media.
purview of this minor arcana. It is befitting for
The act of giving will be returned in
Chinchio’s questions of authorship and mimicry
of information and accomplishment. Consider
Lorette Cole Duprat’s jewellery to represent
are within the realm of the wands, who deal
the way these metrics can combine with
the Six of Pentacles with its acrylic forms that
with inspiration. When present in an act of
current standards of success for a future-
behave like a magnifying glass. Through giving,
divination, digitally inspired jewellery conjures
one can help one understand their own or
Embrace the potential in new sources
new ways to transport information in an age of
other people’s needs, as if looking through a
constant observation and feedback.
magnifying glass comprised of compassion.
This minor arcana also contains swirls of
Duprat’s soft curves appear as if gliding
Pentacles. Meandering around the card’s
JOOHEE HAN : THE MAGICIAN
and reformed into many geometric shapes.
Changed by the power of The Magician, these
Coursing with the energy of life, creativity, and
eggs have hatched and became something
action, eggshell and silicone jewellery from
even more esteemed.
Joohee Han levitates in The Magician’s card.
This arcana embodies the grounding force of
lives most fully when acting and creating.
willpower, the ability to make something real
Some people may be tempted to linger in this
out of life’s possibilities. Optimistic by impli-
energized state, but this will cause stagnation
LORETTE COLÉ DUPRAT
cation, an egg can hatch into anything but still
as it is not The Magician’s nature as a conduit
needs sustenance to grow. The Magician is the
Kreative Quartier, Halle 6
Neureutherstraße 15, Munich, Germany
conduit that channels emotional and creative
Dachauer Straße 112, Munich, Germany
12.03 - 15.03
power into freshly hatched goals – but this
things possible. Take the first steps towards an
12.03 - 15.03
Opening 12.03 18:00
power is not gentle or benign. That is why the
idea and then pass the energy of inspiration on
eggshells in Joohee Han’s pieces have broken
to your peers.
Fri- Sun 12:00-19:00
The Magician indicates that we live our
Vitality is present and able to make new
JING JIANG THE WHEELOF FORTUNE
why and how change enters into one’s life
JING CHANG FOUR OF SWORDS
polishing jewellery affects the image that
but rather continues unceasingly turning
When Fortuna spins her shining wheel the
both up and down.
Unlike the ticking face of a typical watch,
reflecting, or buffing, yields a clearer picture
symbols blur like a bird wings in flight.
Jing Chang’s watch face is still as a reflecting
Designed to enable curiosity, the inlayed
the soft delicacy of fine craft just as The
pool. Both the Four of Swords and Chang’s
bird feathers in Jing Jiang’s wheel-shaped
Wheel of Fortune turns the life cycle of
jewellery reside in that stillness to meditate
and the chance to replenish mental power.
earrings don’t spin but they do hypno-
death and rebirth. An indication of change,
on reflection. Checking the time is the rea-
A watch face becomes a portal to a place
tise with hints of deeper meaning. The
the card is a reminder of the importance
son a person looks at their watch, but the
where one can respond to difficulties in
spiritually curious will discern that there is
of adapting to chaos.
reasons a person might question who they
their own time with room for a cautious
more waiting to be seen within the Wheel
are can be more complex. The impetus for
of Fortune’s illusions of luck and fate.
jewellery is adapting to change. See chaos
looking inward is part of the Four of Swords
Concealed behind fluttering bird’s feathers
as an opportunity for curiosity, and ulti-
along with the stabilisation that comes with
and to use that isolation to grow, but don’t
are the hidden connections between all
Jiang gives the feathers new life in
Consider the way contemporary
reflects back at its wearer. More time spent
Withdrawal also can mean healing
Sometimes it is good to be separated,
rest and retreat. Jing Chang’s jewellery
lose your connections to the outside world
events. Halfway through the Tarot deck,
considers that impetus and the labour that
before it is time to come back.
The Wheel of Fortune does not answer
comes with focusing the mind. The work of
Typhaine le Monnier
Olaf T. Hodne
Herzogstraße 79, 80796 München, Germany
Augustenstraße 48, 80333 München, Germany
11.03 - 15.03
11.03 - 15.03
Opening reception 11.03 17:00-21:00
Thu-Fri 11:00-17:00 Sat 11:00-15:00 Sun 11:00-17:00
TYPHAINE LE MONNIER JUSTICE
Le Monnier's cuff floats around the
OLAF T HODNE THE EMPEROR
The father is grounded in the institutions
truth-telling vocal cords to intercede and
Inside of the ouroboros within Justice is
ornate the neck. A physical reminder of
Potent and stern, The Emperor conjures the
not be able to pursue personal and spiritual
Tiphaine Le Monnier’s balanced neck cuff.
the necessity of taking responsibility for
father in his archetypal role as protector.
growth. Framed by and composed of orderly
The stationary point around which opposites
a current situation. People are formed by
Olaf T. Hodne’s stone brooches offer a simi-
geometry, Hodne’s brooch similarly safe-
revolve, Justice shows Monnier’s jewellery
the actions of the past but the future self
lar symbolism by referencing the silhouettes
guards its wearer from chaos. Conversely,
with one half circle embodying the past and
is formed by the decisions of the present.
of shields – an item often decorated by a
The Emperor’s penchant for law and order
the other the future - understanding of the
Justice’s psychic freedom comes from the
coat of arms pledging loyalty to a male ruler.
can cause repression within an unbalanced
former leads to just actions in the latter.
clarity between these halves and is spoken
The coat of arms on this shielding brooch
The snake eating his tale whilst spinning in
from within a balanced piece of jewellery.
is not that of a specific patriarch but of
the divine equilibrium of complementary
the earth from which the stone is cut. As
environment creativity within contemporary
colours conjures the wholeness and psychic
but the future could be many things. It is
The Emperor speaks of stability within a
jewellery can flourish. Beware of those with
freedom of truth. Honesty not just in one’s
time to make a choice about what that
just society Hodne’s brooches invoke the
too much power or face stagnation.
dealing with others, but in the way one
future will be.
stability of mountains who share the same
considers their own actions and limits.
The present exists in only one form,
of society without which a subject would
Through the support of a stable
Interview with Wallace Chan By Marina Elenskaya and Suzanne van Leeuwen — Translated by Wong Chi Ho — Transcribed by Rebecca Schena
Travelling to Another Planet Since Munich Jewellery Week takes place largely within the artistic jewellery ‘bubble’, we thought it might be interesting to feature an interview with a contemporary jeweller from a different category. Hong Kong-based Wallace Chan belongs to a small group of the world’s top masters. He is, by all measures, a genius. Known for his ground-breaking material explorations, he also created the most expensive diamond necklace in the world, valued at 200 million USD. But for all his genius, speaking with Chan is like learning from a kind father. His humble musings on the human condition leave you with the impression that he has absorbed a world’s worth of wisdom, beauty, and pain, and that these are the experiences he seeks to share via his spectacular artistry. Peering through the lustrous layers of one of his jewellery creations is akin to glimpsing another world in microcosm, one teeming with colours, botanical forms and scintillating rays of light that bounce and reflect in more directions than seem possible in our mere four-dimensional universe. It’s as if he has opened a tiny portal into a new, surreal realm where materials have mutated: diamonds take the place of gold, clay is reconstituted to mimic the strength of steel scaffolding, and titanium transmits iridescent colour with the delicacy of a butterfly wing.
A New Generation. The ring takes inspiration from pea pods and spaceships. Courtesy of Wallace Chan
MARINA ELENSKAYA (ME)
We are excited that you will be exhibiting your work at the upcoming TEFAF (The European Fine Art Fair), which will be held in Maastricht (7-15 March). Could you tell us about the pieces you are planning to show?
WALLACE CHAN (WC)
This year at TEFAF we are going to have a new design for our booth, based off of my childhood memories. When I saw an astronaut when I was young, I imagined that when we saw the reflection in an astronaut’s helmet, we could see the reflection of the universe. Even though the astronaut could not see himself, he could see the universe as a whole. I wanted to transfer that memory to the design of the booth, so we are going to have five showcases, each representing the reflection in the helmet and expressing how the pieces could travel to different planets. One of the creations that will be showcased at TEFAF is a snowflake brooch that will show, through a jewellery piece, what cannot be captured by a camera. It is a unique form of snowflake made with different colours of gemstones in order to express the different images of a snowflake. In this piece, I want to transcend what is not normally made physical.
SUZANNE VAN LEEUWEN (SVL)
In looking at your work – with its ground-breaking use of materials such as super-strong porcelain, anodised titanium, and precisely carved gemstones – one can see that innovation is one of your driving forces, but do you also look back at the past? Is there a period of historical jewellery in which you are primarily interested?
We are nothing without the past. The foundation that we build upon comes from the people before us, and we would have to start at zero if it weren’t for them! I enjoy all kinds of antiques – teapots, weapons, snuff bottles, furniture, porcelain and marble sculptures. If you want to innovate, you must go beyond your comfort zone. Take knowledge from other fields. Mix it, transform it.
That’s how you can help your field evolve and make progress.
Last year you visited the conservation studios at the Rijksmuseum, where they conserve artist manuscripts and historical manuals from the last few centuries. One of the ways to better understand an object and to preserve it for the future is to learn how it is made. It is very valuable to know what materials and techniques were used by an object’s maker. Are you planning to leave this kind of information for future generations? Or do you think your pieces will stand the test of time and won’t need conservation or restoration work?
I think that this is a wonderful question, but I’m afraid that I don’t have a very good habit of keeping records because much of the creative process happens directly from my mind, to my hand, to my work. If I stop to write something down or draw it out, I lose my train of thought. When I’m creating, I forget about everything outside of creating, so I don’t think about writing things down or making records. Another thing is that I change my mind and my approach all the time. The end result is always different from what I had in mind originally. It’s very difficult to keep track, but I always create with the goal that the works will stand the test of time. I also wish for my pieces to be teachers, in the sense that people can understand the materials and techniques used to make them by closely observing them.
‘When I saw an astronaut when I was young, I imagined that when we saw the reflection in an astronaut’s helmet, we could see the reflection of the universe…’ of thing. Sometimes I’ll be looking at a model and thinking of what I can do with it, coming up with plans for it, but along the way I’ll forget what my original plan was! A lot of things are constantly happening at the same time and sometimes they bring back memories of the past and of different experiences that I’ve had. So, it’s not just focusing on one thing at one moment. I work on many projects at the same time, and as I do that, I just go along with my feelings and sometimes along the way I am inspired by different materials or tools. That new inspiration may lead me to express what I am making differently.
What gets the concept for a collection started for you? Do you start with a design drawing? With a certain gemstone?
I’ve never thought about designing or creating a ‘collection’. I think that ‘collection’ is more of a fashionable term, and I’m not a fashionable person! Each piece of my creation has a unique theme. Sometimes I’m inspired by a stone, sometimes it may just be an idea in my mind. I try to keep my creative zone as free as possible. The creative process is not a linear process, it’s not a step-by-step kind
It seems like titanium is your metal of choice, and I saw that you mentioned that titanium is healthier for the human body than other metals. Perhaps you would like to elaborate on what makes titanium so inspiring for you?
‘Healthier’ may not be a precise enough term, but titanium is known to be bio-friendly and compatible with the human body. I first learned about titanium after reading a news article on the pacemaker, a medical device that stimulates the heart. At the time, I was looking for
Brooch Garden of Dreams, Ruby, Fancy Coloured Diamond, Diamond, South Sea Pearl, Titanium, The Wallace Chan Porcelain
a metal that would be light enough for me to set bigger stones, but at the same time would not be a burden on the body. Titanium is a very light metal and I can bring many different colours out of it. Depending on what kind of gemstones I want to use in a certain jewellery piece, I can choose what colour I want the titanium to be. That’s the huge advantage of this metal. With the knowledge that titanium is compatible enough with the human body to be made into an implanted medical device, I decided that it would be the right metal for my creations.
Last year you showed several pieces from your porcelain collection, based on your childhood experience with a broken porcelain spoon. Can we still call the ‘porcelain’material that you have created, even though it is not fragile? How does your jewellery fit into the tradition of cherishing porcelain objects so that they can last for centuries?
The world is filled with love and it’s very important that we learn how to love. If you love something, you would cherish it and handle it with care. Even if it’s just an ordinary cup, you would place it on the table very gently. Jewellery itself is meant to be the embodiment of love, history, culture, memories and emotions. Gemstones are hard, and diamond is the hardest material on Earth, but their hardness does not make us cherish or care about them less. All the ingredients in the Wallace Chan porcelain are the same ingredients found in traditional porcelain. That didn’t change. But, in order to fulfill my creative desires, I changed its purpose and the way it is manufactured. I needed my porcelain to be hard enough to be the structure of my jewellery creations, and to carry the pieces toward future centuries. Also, the jewellery pieces must be wearable, and comfortable for the wearer, or else they are a failure. So, their structures cannot be made with fragile materials. The ingredients in traditional porcelain do not meld together very well during the process of sintering because all the ingredients have different melting points. They melt at different moments, making the porcelain fragile. I changed the compositions of the ingredients, their size,
A ‘ ll I could do was experiment and learn from my mistakes and failures’ the sintering process, the temperature, the length of the sintering, etc, so that those ingredients can mix much better than they do traditionally. That’s why Wallace Chan porcelain is so much harder than traditional porcelain. I’ll use a metaphor to better explain how my porcelain is still porcelain. When you fire gold, if you leave it to cool at room temperature, it remains very soft. But, if you put it in ice water right after firing, then the gold shrinks and becomes very hard. The hardness changes after the firing process, just like my porcelain. Is it still gold or do we call it something else?
WC Our failures are our best teachers and success is always built on failures. I never received a formal education, and when I was a young fellow, there was no Google either. So, to acquire knowledge was very difficult. All I could do was experiment and learn from my mistakes and failures. I would take a piece of jade, attempt to cut it, and only end up losing all of its lustrous colour at the end. I would file a patent for my jade refining and brightening technique, only to realise how strenuous the application process was and that it was never worth the time and effort. My life is far from a fairy tale. There was hunger, poverty, loss and grief. I want to show people that it is okay to experience all of these things, and then turn our experiences into something true, kind and beautiful. SVL
Where are you the happiest? Is it behind the workbench? At a show? Lecturing? Is it difficult to maintain your creativity now that you have become a large brand with a team and are not quietly behind the workbench?
I read that gold is, indeed, your next project –24k gold with the hardness of 18k gold? Can you tell us more about your research?
I’m a very greedy person, so I’m always working on different projects and research at once. I’ve been working on the gold project for over ten years, even before I started working on porcelain. But the porcelain became successful before I succeeded with this other project. If I tell you more about the gold right now and then something else comes out in two years, then it would be very awkward! Let’s just keep it quiet for now in case I don’t succeed!
It seems that you do a lot of trial and error and learn a lot from your mistakes. I read that you call yourself a ‘master of error’. I really love that! I think it’s good to admit that mistakes happen and that they are a normal part of the creative process. Could you tell us about a mistake that led to something else?
I’m happy wherever I am, whether I’m in my studio, at a tradeshow, or giving a talk and sharing my experiences with other people. But I must say that I’m the happiest when I’m creating and whenever I get to sit down and focus on my creation. It’s like I travel to another planet. I know that I’m far from perfect and that reality is imperfect in itself, but whenever I travel to this ‘planet’, I feel that it is possible to perfect my being. To me, there is never enough time. Manufacturing must be done in a studio or a workshop, but exercising your creativity is not limited by space or time. I’m curious about everything in the world – I’m always inspired, and I’m always creating. No matter where I am, I’m always inspired by the environment and by the people around me. When an audience member, or anyone comes up to me and talks to me, the conversation itself could eventually become my inspiration for a creation. I feel that it’s necessary for me to share my experiences while I can. I’m both humbled and honoured by the opportunity to tell my stories. Because I never went to school myself, I have always felt strongly about
Brooch Garden of Dreams, Ruby, Fancy Coloured Diamond, Diamond, South Sea Pearl, Titanium, The Wallace Chan Porcelain
Parure Windows to the Universe, Pearl, Diamond, Pink Sapphire, Green Tourmaline Tsavorite Garnet, White Agate, Lapis Lazuli, Titanium
education. I’m so glad that I’m able to contribute to the lives of others.
Hong Kong is the centre of some social upheaval right now. How is that affecting your work?
I’ve always tried to work, not for now, not for yesterday, not for tomorrow, but for history and for the future. Today we are facing all kinds of challenges, but we must never forget the importance of love and empathy. I try to convey this message through my works, and I believe that if I give my works time and attention and the very best of myself, they will stand the test of time to embody love and empathy in the future. There will always be new challenges to overcome. Reality is never perfect, but the world of creativity shows me that in some ways, perfection is attainable. The universe is fast and time is a long, long river. All we have are moments, be them good or bad. But eventually, all of those moments will no longer be. It is just a matter of time before it comes to that, so I try to transcend all of my Earthly desires and emotions through my creations. I create for a time and space far, far away.
Speaking of the future, what do you think about the environmental impact of using precious stones?, If, in the context of your philosophy, you see gemstones as ‘memories of the universe’, how do you feel about questions of sustainability when using them in your work today?
Sustainability is a relatively new term that did not exist in the first few decades of my career. At a young age I experienced poverty, which taught me to cherish everything I have. The best way to do so is to optimise all of my resources. Every creation must be done in the best way possible, so that there is no waste made. During my creative process, I seldom throw things away. If a tool cannot be used for its original purpose anymore, then I turn it into a tool for another purpose. I don’t just throw it away. When I accumulate broken pieces of crystal during the processes of carving, sculpting and experimenting, I turn those broken pieces into another creation. It could be a jewellery piece, a sculpture, or a piece of installation
work. I keep everything I have, regardless of it being used or unused, broken or unbroken. My goal is to create things that will last, hopefully, forever. Gemstones are the memories of the universe because they come from the Earth. They are immortal and are going to outlive all of us. Every gemstone that comes to me should be respected and given the home that it deserves.
I heard that you create a special stand for each of your jewellery pieces so that they can sit as an art object inside somebody’s home or in a gallery. Do you see your pieces more as art objects or do you prefer to see them being worn?
I think that in order to create jewellery, you must be able to find a balance between it being exhibited as an art object and actually being worn. When a piece of jewellery is not worn, it doesn’t have to stay in a safe. It can still be outside and appreciated. I often create a stand or a sculpture to serve as a home for my jewellery pieces. I want them to have a beautiful home to return to when they’re not worn. But again, jewellery is meant to be worn and a piece must be worn in order to come alive with the movements of the human body.
‘It could be a jewellery piece, a sculpture, or a piece of installation work. I keep everything I have, regardless of it being used or unused, broken or unbroken.’
How much can jewellery artists, who are creators of small and intricate objects, impact the world around them?
No matter what profession we engage in, we are human to begin with, so we’re responsible for history and for other people. The most important thing is to keep a good heart, do good deeds, and speak with kindness. Because when you do that, no matter what you do, you impact the world around you in a good way. When it comes to your profession, it’s all about passion and devotion. The impact that we have does not just come from whether the works that we make are big or small, but whether the works leave behind meaning and inspiration for other people.
About the Author: SUZANNE VAN LEEUWEN MA FGA is Junior Curator and Conservator of Jewellery at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. She studied Art History (introduction course), Classical Archaeology and Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Heritage (specialisation in metals), all at the University of Amsterdam. In 2017 she became a Fellow of the Gemmological Association of Great Britain (FGA) after graduating from the Diploma in Gemmology course. In her work at the museum she combines art historical, archival and material research to study the jewellery collection of the Rijksmuseum.
MJW’20 OVERVIEW For this year’s Munich Jewellery Week,
instigator and jewel close to our hearts.
we are looking back on the past five
This year, in an effort to dive a little
fabulous years of MJW with 20/20
deeper into the stories behind the
vision. In the years that Current
shows, we are sharing some of the
Obsession has been a part of this
shows that we think exemplify this year’s
celebration of contemporary jewellery’s
thrilling MJW line-up, alongside a few
diverse perspectives, we have come
mini-tidbits from the curators and
to know and love so many of you – not
artists that are making them happen.
only for your forever-fascinating art, but this international community brings to
5, 10, and 100 years of Munich
the table. We hold every venue, artist,
Like Lisa Walker’s body of work, ‘She wants to go to her bedroom but she can’t be bothered’ is a decidedly ironic statement, expressing simultaneous desires for comfort, familiarity, accessibility, and utter peculiarity. For Munich Jewellery Week 2020, the VILLA STUCK Museum presents a comprehensive overview of the work of New Zealand’s Lisa Walker. Throughout her career, Walker has traversed the boundaries of jewellery, questioning what jewellery can mean and how far it can be pushed before the eccentric becomes the unrecognisable. Walker transforms everyday objects to make woven translations of beaches and forests, glued and scavenged amalgamations of studio refuse, and irreverent taxidermied ducklings. With a firm foundation in traditional goldsmithing, Walker’s work pays equal respect to all materials – even glue, the formidable ‘jewellery cheater’. ‘Why should we hide him?’ she asks. If we are so quick to protect diamonds and yet discard dust, what does that mean for our treatment of each other?
Lisa Walker, pendant, 2015, plastic, silver
She Wants to Go to Her Bedroom but She Can’t Be Bothered
Lisa Walker, Necklace (304), 2007, Mobile telephone, lacquer, colors
Here’s to all of you! And to the next
Lisa Walker, brooch 2007, plastic, silver, lacquer, paste
also for the spark that each member of
‘SHE WANTS TO GO TO HER BEDROOM BUT SHE CAN’T BE BOTHERED’ Lisa Walker Museum Villa Stuck Prinzregentenstraße 60 05.03 – 07.06 Tue-Sun 11:00-18:00 First Friday every month until 22:00
Lo Fi Faces In 2004, a 10-year-old grilled cheese sandwich with the image of the Virgin Mary emblazoned on its toasty exterior sold on eBay for $28,000. It was hailed as a sacred object by its accidental creator, a jewellery designer from Florida, who believed that it provided protection and guidance from its Tupperware reliquary.
Through magic and play, Lo-Fi Faces inspects our world’s hidden characters and the messages they whisper to us in fleeting moments of recognition. The works examine the collection of features we interpret as faces and how the symbolic ‘face’ informs our understanding of the world and our place within it. From the ubiquitous smiley face to more interpretive expressions, Lo-Fi Faces faces our interdependence head on.
CURRENT OBSESSION (CO) How did the concept for the exhibition come about?
CHLOE VALORSO (CV) The concept for the exhibition started with this simple fact: we see faces everywhere. The pareidolia phenomenon is where we project ourselves to make sense of the world. I believe that's why we make art too: to make sense of our environment. I wanted to curate an exhibition where pieces look back at you, where you enter a playful liminal space. It's an exhibition about transformation.
Amelia Toelke, Gem Face, Best Friends
It is human nature to find forms in the shadows, familiarity in clouds, and faces in the abstract textures of our world. Through tiny clues – movements, outlines, or unexpected sounds – we are confronted by a presence: the suggestion of another being with something to tell us. Perhaps, pareidolia, the ‘incorrect’ perception of meaning within the meaningless, is not so incorrect at all.
CO What are some of the different approaches the artists are taking to interpreting the concepts of lo-fi faces and pareidolia?
Rachel Ness is anthropomorphising her surroundings, using everyday objects in her pieces. Amelia Toelke is creating faces from jewellery: rings become eyes, chains become smiles. Kalkidan Hoex is creating her new tribe, mixing masks and street fashion. Georgina Treviño is playing with the smiley face, creating new icons. Lara Orawski is interested in rituals and the human presence. I (Chloé Valorso) am creating amulets in the witching hours of the twenty-first century, mixing organic materials and contemporary culture.
CO How does one display jewellery made of secret faces? he exhibition will work as a 3D collage in which T our works coexist, challenge and merge with each other. For the display I am using a surrealist process: the exquisite cadaver. Playing with jewellery and drawings from all the artists, I am making spirits to make a new poetic horizon. Like Martin Parr said, ‘I am not looking for beauty but for ambiguity’.
LO FI FACES Jackie Andrews, Kalkidan Hoex, Rachel Ness, Lara Orawski, Amelia Toelke, Georgina Treviño & Chloé Valorso super+CENTERCOURT Adalbertstraße 44, Munich, Germany 11.03 - 15.03 Disco Opening 11.03 18:00 - 20.00 Thu - Sun 11:00 - 18:00
Felieke van der Leest, The end 2012, brooch and object, seed beads and toy, photo by Eddo Hartmann
CS I have been working with and about beads for quite some time now, and when studying and investigating this subject I came across and selected this group of artists (some I have known for quite a long time and others were true revelations) who share a similar passion through different interpretations.
aroline Broadhead searches for balance between C substance and image, presence and absence with a lyrical and intimate approach.
Daniel Kruger, inspired by the beading work of the Ndebele women from South Africa, brings up a series of elegant cylindrical pendants/necklaces that captivate us with their precious surfaces and sensual, flexible movements. Felieke van der Leest uses fairy-tale-like imagery that strives to strike the viewer with serious themes, ironising conventional jewellery.
Manon van Kouswijk, Making Faces - a jewellery playbook, 2018, 1 plastic necklace in 8 appearances, photo by Fred Kroh
Joyce J. Scott’s work prods the viewer to question social and political stereotypes.
Beaded The humble bead! We owe it all to them, those tiny little beings with holes through their hearts, those utterly simplistic carriers of meaning too often relegated to the realms of meaningless kitsch or outdated history. Beads are among the oldest objects known to have been made: as early as 70,000–90,000 years ago, shells were drilled and worn as beaded necklaces, to be traded and gifted. Whether linked to commercial transactions, used as currency in the afterlife, or utilised as part of religious rituals, beads are an undeniable part of the human story. Unfortunately, it is precisely their ubiquity that has made them seem banal and unimportant. When we see beads, we often think of children fusing Perler beads into the shape of a dinosaur or of cheesy giftshop keychains. Beaded breathes life back into this history-laden material by presenting nine international artists who, at some point in their career, explored beads as tiny tools for communication.
CURRENT OBSESSION What are the intentions of the exhibition in terms of the selection of artists and the specific techniques discussed?
CATARINA SILVA (CS) The exhibition Beaded brings to light a material charged with history and symbolism, enhancing its possibilities and avoiding the banalisation and stigmatised conception that it has been subject to over the centuries.
M anon van Kouswijk shows some of her artist publications, which are a fundamental part of her conceptual thinking and of her approach, itself rooted in historical archetypes for contemporary making.
Sari Liimatta works with people’s interactions with animals and other human beings, acting like a reporter, documenting stories that aim to produce a change in how we act on environmental issues.
Sébastien Carré mixes a wide range of materials to create colourful structures that look at once like cosmic landscapes and living organisms similar to bacteria. WALKA Studio founders, Nano Pulgar and Claudia Betacourt, take a trip back in time to pre-Columbian civilisations to approach the tradition of bead necklaces passed down from mother to daughter, reminding us of how important cultural heritage is in the twenty-first century. I (Catarina Silva) have been developing a series of votive pieces with ritualistic and contemplative characters – similar to reliquaries – as a way to archive memories that I have collected over time.
CO Why do you think it’s important to show your work during MJW?
Choosing the material itself as the title for this group show communicates an intent to question the identity, place and potential of contemporary jewellery in its material diversity and technical vocabulary.
CS Showing at Munich Jewellery Week is a fundamental
I have chosen a group of artists whose works I admire, encompassing different countries and continents, through different cultures and aesthetics, in order to present to the public the plastic and conceptual potential of beads.
Collaborating on an event marked by a huge diversity of artists, jewellers, collectors and gallerists enables a rich exchange of ideas and projects. This event is the centre of the contemporary jewellery scene. It is in fact the most interesting place to be!
step for an artist and an important experience in itself. It is challenging to say the least and is a way to interact with an international art scene.
CO Beads and beadwork are known and regarded as overly feminine, and sometimes as ‘hobbyist’, and I was wondering if the exhibition tackles, disproves, or approves of those assumptions in any way?
BEADED Caroline Broadhead, Catarina Silva, Daniel Kruger, Felieke van der Leest, Joyce J. Scott, Manon van
CS I am aware of the ‘hobbyist’ and feminine-labour relation that the general public relates to when thinking about beads and beadwork, and my intention is to challenge the visitors to face this misconception and cross that borderline while questioning and problematising the status of this primordial and timeless material.
Kouswijk, Sari Liimatta, Sébastien Carré & Walka Studio Institut Français Kaulbachstraße 13, 80539 München, Germany Welcome drink 12.03 17:00-21:00 11.03 - 15.03 Wed 11:00-19:00 Thu 11:00-21:00 Fri-Sat 11:00-19:00
CO Could you tell me about the list of artists? What brings this group together?
Echoes of a Meal is, in essence, an invitation to experience a comfortable togetherness. The artists invite you to feel the intensity and closeness of a Danish meal, and to leave with both your minds and bellies full. Both the making of jewellery and the preparation of a meal are intensely sensory experiences, and both jewellery and food are made and consumed, in some sense, by the body. The memory of that perfect bite of herbed potato will remain stored away, to be brought back into clear focus by the fleeting scent of parsley in the air. What remains after the meal is the memory of the act. With jewellery, the memory is similarly stored and decoded by the senses, forming a connection between time and place: ‘Where did I last feel the weight of silver against my chest?’ Echoes of a Meal offers the generous gift of community and a familiar environment where conversation flows freely across cultures. Prompted by the specific aesthetic of a
only about food culture and society but also about Danish jewellery art and its approach and position in the world of international jewellery.
CO Do you see the individual pieces in the exhiCURRENT OBSESSION Could you share more about traditional Danish table setting, and how you developed this concept for the show?
bition as specifically relating to community, or are you more hoping to unify work about a variety of concepts through this presentation?
JANNE HANSEN (JH) The exhibition design refers
JH T he individual pieces do relate to commu-
to a traditional Danish table setting with its classic Danish dishes and aesthetic and the intensity associated with the togetherness a meal can offer. This year, 2020, is German-Danish friendship year, and we wish to contribute to this cultural exchange by presenting elements that are essentially Danish and recognisable as such. A table setting and the essence of a meal fit these prerequisites and work well with the polyphonous theme of the echo – echo as a document of an event, a feeling, a tradition. There is something very reassuring about being able to spot the similarities and differences between these two cultures, and we hope to open up a dialogue not
nity, but the pieces also deal with a range of other topics such as our senses and how they influence so many aspects of our interpretation and perception of the world. For us as jewellery makers, the creation of jewellery and the preparation of a meal both share an intense use of the senses, as both meals and jewellery are produced and used by the body. The individual works approach the theme with their own particular use of materials, narrative and form, but ultimately come together to present an extensive menu of observations and expressions.
Echoes of a Meal group image
traditional Danish meal, the table, as well as the jewellery upon it, will become a platform where artists of all backgrounds can meet and open up to each other, to exchange thoughts and come closer together.
ECHOES OF A MEAL Mette Saabye, Helen Clara Hemsley, Janne K. Hansen & Josefine Rønsholt Parkstraße 5, Munich, Germany Vernissage with danish snacks and drinks 12.03 Helen Clara Hemsley
Echoes of a Meal
17:00-20:00 Thu 12:00-20:00 Fri 10:00-17:00 Sat 10:00-15:00 Sun 10:00-12:00
IO&U Graduation Show
IO&U GRADUATION SHOW Margherita Berselli, Annie Huang, Pei Wu, Sayara Montemurro, Annora Poppe, Franziska Lusser, Anna Storck, Vanessa Zöller, Jekaterina
Smirnova, Barbora Opátová, Setarah Shojaee & Samantha Laddin Lovaas
IO&U is an international collective of 12 tenacious female jewellers recently graduated from Trier University in Idar-Oberstein. Join the collective for a week of communal events celebrating all things jewellery, gemmy and tasty.
Fürstenstraße 6, 80333 München, Germany Opening, ‘Welcome to IO&U’: 11.03, 20:00 Tue 16:00–21:00, Tue 13:00–16:00 Private view Wed 10:00–22:00, Thu 10:00–21:00 with 10:00–11:00 ‘Put A Pin On It’, Workshop
Welcome to IO&U: Join the artists for the opening of their exhibition featuring selections from their stunning thesis collections, and stone carving techniques you didn’t know were even possible.
13:00–16:00 ‘I wanna wear it’, Red carpet photo sh ot. Fri 10:00–21:00 with 10:00–11:00 ‘Put A Pin On It’, Workshop 13.03, 16:00–19:00 ‘I wanna wear it’, Red carpet photo shot.
Put a Pin on It workshop: Do you want to feel like a part of something? Do you want to begin your day at MJW with a healthy dose of social innovation? Maybe you just have a strong desire to make something and pin it to yourself. Regardless of the reason, Put a Pin on It is the workshop for you!
Gemtonic Red-eye talk: Join the artists as they crack open their creative world like a geode in order to share their thoughts about stone, making, process and the future.
Mindful Mining Under the stairs: Kookmin University in Seoul. Prof. Dongchun (Exhibition Cancelled) Join professor Dongchun Lee and the Metalwork & Jewellery students of Seoul’s Kookmin University in a modern archaeological effort, as they carefully chisel away shale and brush away centuries of sediment to uncover the little-noticed beauties of the Anthropo cene. Through the delicate practice of Mindful Mining, new meaning is extracted from the unnoticed elements of nature and the everyday environment to be recrystallised into innovative adornments. Each new observation is itself a precious mineral that, through the creative processes of this sensitive group of ‘miners’, can again become part of our world. A collaborative effort, their studio resembles a multi-veined mine into which they descend with the greatest care and towards unexpected, surprising discoveries.
20:00 “Gemtonic red-eye-talk”, drinks and open conversations
Pei Wu, #01 from a series of parent, past life, teddy bear brooch, 2020, 14ct gold, rose quartz, photo by artist
From Dumpling to Pancake international brunch: One of the most beautiful aspects of the human experience is the universal love for dough or batter wrapped around a tasty filling: dumplings, crepes, perogies, ravioli, empanadas. Join IO&U for a cosy international brunch and discover the delicious breakfasts of the nine cultures represented by the collective. Don’t just see the beauty of our small world, taste it!
to pancake’, international brunch,
NUDA VITA: The Practice of Collective and Political Body (Exhibition Cancelled)
The nude are bold, the nude are sly To hold each treasonable eye. While draping by a showman's trick Their dishabille in rhetoric, They grin a mock-religious grin Of scorn at those of naked skin. The naked, therefore, who compete Against the nude may know defeat; Yet when they both together tread The briary pastures of the dead, By Gorgons with long whips pursued, How naked go the sometime nude! – Robert Graves
Annora Poppe, Regecting Landscapes, necklace, 2019, rock crystal, aluminum, titanium. Photo by Jekaterina Smirnova
I Wanna Wear it photoshoot: Feel like Beyoncé in your own red-carpet-style photoshoot, wearing your favourite piece by the artists of IO&U.
Sat 10:00–22:00 with 11:00 ‘From dumpling
Eva van Kempen Lady Liberty, from the series Freedom as Luxury 2020 Materials Expired abortion pills, PVC film, artificial leather, spring steel, steel, Photo by Hugo Rompa, Model Eva van Kempen
For Munich Jewellery Week, Adornment – Curating Contemporary Art Jewellery will present the second chapter of Nuda Vita, an exhibition exploring the role of the public and political body via the expression ‘nuda vita’, reworked as an impossible condition, an indescribable concept, and an artistic action. The exhibiting artists were invited to explore 'nudity' as an ideological and existential condition that humanity experiences when free from societal constraints. To be nude is to be emancipated from the social fabric which constrains, covers, and identifies us, to emerge with breasts out, soft underbellies exposed, scars and stomas valiantly wielded, demanding space and autonomy. 'Nuda Vita' remains an act of provocation and resistance which stages the body, through the wearing of a jewel, as a statement of humanity.
NUDA VITA: THE PRACTICE OF COLLECTIVE AND POLITICAL BODY MINDFUL MINING
Vivien Bedwell, Daria Borovkova, Satomi
Under the stairs: Kookmin University in Seoul.
Kawai, Anna Lewis, Nina Lima, Peter Machata,
Prof. Dongchun Lee and his students
Jana Machatova, Nanna Obel, Margherita Potenza, Eva van Kempen, Tanel Veenre
Die Neue Sammlung – The Design Museum,
& Snem Yildirim
Pinakothek der Moderne Barer Straße 40, 80333 München, Germany
ABC Westside Galerie
Opening 13.03 19:00
Schwanthalerstraße 176, Munich, Germany
Opening reception 12.03 16:00-19:00
Monika Brugger, Fingerprints from M.B. A fleurs des doigts, since 2008, rings, silver, gold, photo by Corinne Janier Paris
Monika Brugger Fingerhut, since 1992 Weddingring, 2008 Rings Silver, gold Photo: Corinne Janier Paris
Monika Brugger, Stichwunde, Geschenk der Näherin (detail), 2007, Detail linen, grenats, Jeu de dés, 2018, earrings, recovered thimbles, silver, red gold, grenats, photo by Corinne Janier Paris
Heimat ou les Ritournelles de Monika Brugger Garnets ooze from the seams of Monika Brugger’s garments, seeping out like blood from the cracks of hands dried from clothes washing. Her shirts are soft, tender and solemn. They make you want to crawl inside of them, to place your chest in the gaping hole of her burned Brandmal ‘Schmück’ dress and to place your arm behind the seam of her Stichwunde, Geschenk der Näherin in order to stop the bleeding. They speak softly of violence and kindness, of scars and mending, of identification and ownership of one’s body, and of quiet endurance, both national and personal. Heimat ou les Ritournelles is a return to home, with all of the tenderness, cloying sweetness and hardship that may result.
CURRENT OBSESSION What are the intentions of the exhibition in terms of the span of the work you will be showing, as well as presentation?
MONIKA BRUGGER (MB) I will be exhibiting works that show the extent of my artistic investigations into the questions of both clothing and jewellery. The presentation will be a kind of echo to the place, to the move to make! And surely, I will take a humorous approach to the way that jewels will be – or are too often – presented! And you will come to the boutique de la Maison Monika Brugger!
CO Could you tell me about the title and why you chose it?
permeability with reality and the images they call to mind.’
CO Why do you think it’s important to show your work during MJW?
MB It is not so often that I can show my works in Germany (don’t forget, I speak French when I make my works, but I still have a German background). The occasion of MJW is also the moment where my colleagues are present, so it is the moment to show my works to the jewellery community.
MB Heimat is the word that upsets, the word that does not translate, the most complicated German word, but it shows the way I feel when I’m thinking of jewels. Les ritournelles are explained well by Laurence Verdier:
HEIMAT OU LES RITOURNELLES DE MONIKA BRUGGER Institut Français
Monika Brugger makes honey from these images by transforming them into jewellery and installations. To wander among the works of Monika is to seize these images – the cherries on the ears of a child, a bead of blood, flies in a summer garden – images which resonate in us so strongly they could be our own. A mischievous novelist who tickles the French language, playing with words, their meanings, their
Kaulbachstraße 13, Munich, Germany Welcoming drinks 12.03 17:00-21:00 Tue 14:00-19:00 Wed 11:00-19:00 Thu 11:00-21:00 Fri-Sat 11:00-19:00, Sun 14:00-18:00 13.03, 13:00 artist presentation 14.03, 11:00 Special talk with Julia Wild
Declaration of Sentiments
Nevertheless, in this historical process, women artists opposed marginalisation and rejected the gender-based roles imposed by the patriarchal system. They continued their struggle in the field of art by running their own galleries, organising their own exhibitions and opening their own art schools. The Women’s Social and Political Union used the daintiness associated with femininity to their advantage during the Suffrage movement: wearing white, frilled dresses and exquisite hats to protests and delicate green and purple jewellery as they threw rocks through windows. The Declaration of Sentiments exhibition was designed as a continuation of this historical process and brings together women artists within the framework of women’s struggle in the art world. The exhibition was named after the Declaration of Sentiments, written at the American Seneca Falls Congress of 1848 under the leadership of Elizabeth Cady Stanton. The Declaration was signed by 100 women and men and is the first organised record of women’s rights in modern history. ‘The history of mankind is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations on the part of man toward woman, having in direct object the establishment of an absolute tyranny over her. To prove this, let facts be submitted to a candid world […] Now, in view of this entire disfranchisement of one-half the people of this country, their social and religious degradation – in view of the unjust laws above mentioned, and because women do feel themselves aggrieved, oppressed, and fraudulently deprived of their most sacred rights, we insist that they have immediate admission to all the rights and privileges which belong to them as citizens of these United States.’ –The Declarations of Sentiments
Jewellery not Jewellery
Judith Neunhäuserer, Masks of ice, 2019, 40 digital photographs, slide show
Throughout history, the existence of women in art and social life has often been rendered invisible. The woman, previously described through symbols of fertility and abundance, was depicted as an evil creature in the Middle Ages and has since been categorised binarily as either a Madonna or a Harlot. With the evolution of the matriarchal to the patriarchal structure, women were marginalised, made second-class citizens without bodily autonomy, financial independence or civic rights. When women attempted to enter the public sphere, they were met with a dismissive male-dominated society that was quick to relegate all misbehaving women to the status of unladylike degenerates who could be ignored. Women in the arts were likewise ignored, and their work was only associated with homely crafts requiring manual dexterity.
Sophia Mainka, Gartenarbeit, 2019, plant foam, mixed-media, dimensions variable 15x20x10 cm
Are my glasses the right prescription? Because the boundary between art and jewellery is looking mighty blurry! Jewellery-not-Jewellery invites 25 multi-disciplinary artists to traverse (and destroy) the boundaries between jewellery, sculpture, performance and so-called ‘fine art’. After all, what is the act of wearing jewellery, if not performance art? What is a jewel, if not a tiny sculpture to decorate the temple that is the body? Some have created art pieces out of jewellery; others, art pieces about jewellery; and still others, jewellery as art pieces. This exhibition opens up a broader conversation about how we define jewellery in an art context. We continued this conversation with the instigator of Jewellery-not-Jewellery, Katie Britchford.
KB Jewellery is contemporary and part of the art scene,
exhibition, and how does the selection of artists reflect the stated interdisciplinarity?
so it is important to have a conversation about it, or to at least include it as part of the conversation. For me though, it is also important to broaden this conversation beyond being just about material and the processes of making jewellery and to also ask conceptual questions about why jewellery exists and how it exists in our society. There are other artists in the art world making jewellery or art about jewellery that never seems to filter into the 'contemporary jewellery scene'. It is my hope that through this exhibition a new conversation can begin and ideas and concepts can be expanded.
KATIE BRITCHFORD (KB): It is my intention with the
CO Why do you think it’s important to show your work
CURRENT OBSESSION What are the intentions of the
exhibition to open up a dialogue between contemporary jewellery and fine art. To bridge the gap a little and view the idea of ‘jewellery as concept' rather than just addressing jewellery via different mediums. This is done in many ways: through video, performance, painting, drawing, text, sculpture and objects. Doing this, I believe, encourages a different discourse around what jewellery means for our society and how the concept of jewellery is viewed through the eyes of non-jewellery contemporary artists.
KB I think MJW is a perfect opportunity to show this exhibition. It has the ability to open up a conversation about what jewellery is and can be from a different perspective. And also, it will be a great break in the program away from the typical exhibitions you see during MJW.
CO Could you talk about how the work is going to be DECLARATION OF SENTIMENTS
presented and why?
Nevin Arig, Erica Bello, Jessica Calderwood, Melissa Cameron, Fatima Tocornal Garcia, Cata Gibert, Yajie Hu, Helena Lehtinen, Anna Lewis, Eija Mustonen, Barbara Paganin, Sondra Sherman, Burcu Sülek, Niki Stylianou, Tarja Tuupanen, Eva Van Kempe & Snem Yildirim Ligsalzstraße 12, Munich, Germany Opening 11.03 16:00-19:00 Tue-Fri 11:00-18:00
KB The two galleries where the work will be presented will act as treasure rooms, filled to the brim with each artist’s own unique interpretation of what jewellery is. Twenty-five artists have approached the topic from their own perspectives and material practices. As a kind of wunderkammer if you will, the chaotic installation will represent a broad interdisciplinary approach that gives the viewer a refreshing perspective.
Sat 11:00-15:00 Sun 11:00-16:00
JEWELLERY-NOT-JEWELLERY Galerie von Empfangshalle + T156 Theresienstraße 154-156, Munich, Germany Opening 09.03 19:00, Performance at 20:00 by Kyrill Constantinides Tank. Followed by DJ Diamond Dust playing some schmuck tunes for your bedazzled ears. Tue-Sun 10:00-18:00
CO Why do you think it’s important to discuss contemporary jewellery in a fine art context?
Finissage with open critique: 15.0, 16:00
Trap Your eyes catch the glimmer of a blue jewel, calling you over like a moth to a flame. It’s beautiful, you think, and exquisitely crafted. You want to hold it, to feel the smooth ring on your finger and the chain embracing your neck. But tread lightly, my friend, and watch where you step, for perilous jaws lurk beneath tempting jewels, ready to snap shut. Do not stray too close to the sun, for your waxen wings may melt, and you may soon fall victim to the jewellery Trap. For MJW 2020, four Japanese artists – Takashi Kojima, Masayuki Nagata, Fumiki Taguchi and Takayoshi Terajima – present the third installation of Trap, an exhibition of equal parts attraction and treacherousness. Current Obsession: Could you tell me more about the title and why you chose it?
TRAP The title is a ‘trap’. We believe that jewellery attracts
quiet space that is perfect for confrontational works. This space will be used for jewellery displays for the first time.
humans, so we’d like to show our works in order to gather people. We catch or ‘trap’ those who are attracted to our work.
CO What are the intentions of the exhibition in terms
CO What are the intentions of the exhibition in terms
of the selection of artists and what brought this group together?
of the span of the work you will be showing?
TRAP The purpose of the exhibition is to present jewellery that you want to pick up. So it is a dark temptation for visitors. Through this experience we want you to enjoy the duality of the tension and the desire to touch.
TRAP We have roots in Japan. As a collective, our aim is to pursue a high degree of perfection. Our group especially values techniques and materials, this is central to craft-thinking. We also focus on the conceptual strength of the work.
CO Why do you think it’s important to show your CO Could you talk about how the work is going to be
work during MJW?
presented and why?
TRAP The work is set into a trap placed on the ground,
lery world. When we were working in Japan, the exhibition in Munich was our dream and triggered our work overseas. Our activities spread from Munich. We think it is the first step as an artist.
Fumiki Taguchi, photo by Masao Nagata
Takashi Kojima, photo by Masao Nagata
quietly waiting for a visitor. The exhibition will be held in a wonderful space called ‘Atelier Rosa’, and will be lit by sunlight only - as if in nature. It is a
TRAP We consider MJW to be the centre of the jewel-
TRAP Takashi Kojima, Masayuki Nagata, Fumiki Taguchi & Takayoshi Terajima Atelier Rosa Osterwaldstraße 89, Munich, Germany 12.03 - 15.03 Fri-Sun 11:00-17:00
Alexander Calder, Hair jewelry, Spanish Comb, 1940. Die Neue Sammlung – Permanent loan from Danner Foundation, Munich Photo Die Neue Sammlung (Alexander Laurenzo)
Danner Rotunda Since first being curated by Hermann Jünger in 2004, the Danner Rotunda at Pinakothek der Moderne has served as a veritable chapel of contemporary art jewellery. A variety of approaches have been taken to displaying a selection of the museum’s collection of over 1,000 jewellery pieces from the 1960s onward. Otto Künzli designed a stark white interior that highlighted the sweeping brutalist architecture of the Rotunda, and Karl Fritsch took a warmer approach to the space, which he filled with 34 bountiful displays. For 2020, the Danner Rotunda will once again be placed into the thoughtful hands of a new curator with their own vision for the space and its contents. However, in contrast to previous years, this year will witness the handing over of the space to six hands instead of two, with three curators collaborating on a new design for the gallery: Mikiko Minewaki, Hans Stofer and Alexander Blank. All three are renowned artists in their own right, with analogous interests in pop culture, iconography, material exploration, and a hint of irreverent humour. With such an exciting selection of curators, the Danner Rotunda is sure to take a wild new form. We can’t wait to lay eyes on the new approach that this generation of artists will take towards the space, and hope to
see the full scope of international, emerging jewellers represented in such a prominent institution. We spoke with Petra Hölscher, the senior curator of Die Neue Sammlung, and this year’s three curators of the Danner Rotunda – Mikiko Minewaki, Hans Stofer and Alexander Blank – to hear more about the process of reimagining the Rotunda for 2020.
CURRENT OBSESSION Could you speak about the process of selecting the three curators? Was there an open call or was an internal decision made by the museum?
PETRA HÖLSCHER (PH) Every five years, Die Neue Sammlung invites an artist – or artists – to present a new curation of the Danner Rotunda. Hermann Jünger, the professor of goldsmithing at the Academy in Munich and one of the founders of and most important communicators within the study of jewellery, curated the first presentation in 2004. He did so with support from Otto Künzli, as Jünger was already seriously ill at that moment. In 2009 it seemed unwise, and not very charming, to ask another ‘founder’ of studio jewellery for a new presentation of the Rotunda. We did not like the idea that there would be competition or trouble between two masters of studio jewellery over the old and the new presentation. Because of this, our former director Florian Hufnagl decided that a younger artist would be the right choice. It was shortly
before Karl Fritsch was set to leave for New Zealand, and he said yes to the invitation. Thus, the Danner Rotunda was changed from concrete with white walls to chocolate brown with a very modern presentation and with over 100 newly loaned objects. In 2014, our visitors asked us to bring back the first presentation by Hermann Jünger and Otto Künzli, so Florian Hufnagl asked Otto Künzli if he wanted to do it. Otto Künzli agreed, but of course it is hard for an artist to repeat things. For his presentation, Otto Künzli picked some of Hermann Jünger’s ideas and some of Karl Fritsch’s and mixed them with his own. He also integrated many of the new jewellery objects that had found their way into the collections of the Danner Foundation and the museum. For the 2019/2020 curation we thought that it would be nice to continue this system, but with a female artist. Mikiko Minewaki was our first choice, but we wondered how it could work, as she lives in Tokyo. To make a long story short, this was why we thought about having a team of curators for the first time in the history of the Danner Rotunda. Mikiko Minewaki and Hans Stofer were already acquainted and had worked on projects together. Alexander Blank, also based in Munich, completed the dream team. We also wanted to revise the showcases and lighting of the space, so we asked Flavia Thumshirn, a lighting designer of world-wide repute, to develop a new lighting concept
Gerd Rothmann, Ear jewellery Sternenohr 1984, Die Neue Sammlung – donation from Galerie Spektrum Photo Die Neue Sammlung (Alexander Laurenzo)
for the space and the jewellery showcases. Additionally, we wanted to develop a solution to make the entrance into the Rotunda easier to find. In collaboration with Berlin-based designer Yang Liu – who was applauded for her light guidance system for Dresden’s Albertinum – an installation featuring neon writing will be created to quite literally present the entrance of the Danner Rotunda in a new light.
CO When selecting three curators instead of one, what did you expect would be the final result?
PH I expected a creative view of the space and a fanciful discussion about the jewellery objects in both collections. And what can I say? They did it! The most interesting part is the coming together of European and Asian aesthetic moments, which you are able to see immediately when coming down the stairs into the Danner Rotunda: it is coloured again!
CO Do you feel that the Danner Rotunda presentations open contemporary jewellery to the general public, or does a visitor need a certain level of knowledge about the field to understand and contextualise the work?
PH Oh, of course! It is interesting for everyone who is curious enough to visit Pinakothek der Moderne to see modern art. However, we have to ask if contemporary art itself is open enough to the general public.
Jewellery at Pinakothek der Moderne, curated by Otto Künzli in 2014 Photo Rainer Viertlböck
CO Could you talk about how the work is going to be presented and why?
MIKIKO MINEWAKI (MM) We wanted to represent the entire collection of jewellery, regardless of who made it or when. It is best to see the real thing! We wanted to share the collection with an open perspective and without preconceptions.
HANS STOFER (HS) Everything was done with little conversation. The concept and the shape of the exhibition grew as we worked. Gradually, the idea of a visual dialogue emerged: the pieces would talk to each other in a playful manner. We would create partnerships where pieces were in a dialogue, forming interconnecting fields of tension where each group of objects was in conversation with the other groups – a bit like when groups of jewellers meet at SCHMUCK to catch up and chat. Because each little constellation is made up of individual objects, the viewer has the possibility to enter into their own dialogue from different points and perspectives. Alexander Blank’s idea to name the display Radar Beeps perfectly captures the way we worked and the way we selected the pieces in each constellation. It is also the way we wanted the audience to approach the show. Radar Beeps demands time, an open mind, no preconceptions and a sense of humour for the magic to happen.
ALEXANDER BLANK (AB) We advanced the selection process in a playful way and listened to the jewellery pieces from the Danner collection and the collection of the Neue Sammlung to let the pieces find a narration in connection with each other.
CO Do you feel that the Danner Rotunda presentations open contemporary jewellery to the general public, or does a visitor need a certain level of knowledge about the field to understand and contextualise the work?
MM I think that a fascination with jewellery is not just for the people in the jewellery world. If someone who doesn’t know about these jewels strays into this room, they could still experience their charms and be surprised by the relationships between them. DANNER ROTUNDA
AB The Danner Rotunda and Pinakothek der Moderne always seek to be open to the general public, so we adopted this goal in our approach towards the 2020 curation. Insiders of the jewellery scene might eventually see different points made within our selection of pieces, but knowledge can also blind us to other possible views and encounters with the pieces. So, it is definitely for both jewellery rookies and pros!
New curation by Mikiko Minewaki, Hans Stofer & Alexander Blank Die Neue Sammlung – The Design Museum, Pinakothek der Moderne Barer Str. 40, 80333 München, Germany Mon. closed Tue-Sun 10:00-18:00 Thu 10:00-20:00
Sharing is Caring CURRENT OBSESSION Could you tell me more about the title, Sharing is Caring and why you chose it?
TOBIAS BIRGERSSON I have been programming director for the BA program at HDK metal art for four years now, during those years I have travelled to America, the UK, Germany and Estonia. I saw similarities and of course differences between the education systems during that time. This sharing project was conceived out of a frustration with the current political systems (Trump and Brexit), that are working against the makers, therefore making it difficult to coexist. We don’t have a real agreement with the UK/ The Hereford school, or the SIU carbondale in Illinois but in spite of the political climate, we still do collaborations and teacher exchange.
work during MJW?
TB I have been going to the jewellery week for 11 years in a row, for me it is a melting pot for craft culture. I have the feeling that the jewellery week has been growing and growing. I feel that ‘Sharing and Caring’ could be too. Makers of ceramics, glass and hollowware, are all interested with interacting with society as a whole, we are not content with only being in our own bubble, therefore as a maker and as a teacher i think it’s important to interact with the platforms, MJW is one platform. These different platforms say different things, for me jewellery week is much more instrumental, it’s much more alive, not the Schmuck, I’m talking about what happens in the town in Munich. So for us to be associated with that, it is fantastic. Our element is Schmuck week, it is where other makers that are connected to a craft or related to a craft go.
Divine Communication (Exhibition Cancelled)
From its particular spot upon the body, at the boundary between the inner self and the outer world, jewellery is often utilised as a communication device between humankind (perpetually in search of meaning) and a spiritual force (for some, the provider of such meaning). It is no coincidence that rosaries are worn and caressed and that gilded statues of religious icons are often rubbed bare, each successive worshipper’s hands adorned with microscopic flakes of gold upon departure. We search for meaning in relation to our bodies and through the objects with which we adorn them. We give and take – offering gold, sacrifice and devotion for the promise of protection. Our worn symbols act as intermediaries between us and our object of worship, allowing for the understanding, transmission and celebration of religion. The artists of Divine Communication investigate these relationships between self, object and divinity – relationships that they see as not only symbolic, but also symbiotic. This does not end with private devotion, but extends into the social, political, cultural and religious structures in which each devotee exists. The exhibited objects aim to question the modern, symbolic status of spirituality in relation to its history. What objects can we utilise to find meaning in today’s world?
SHARING IS CARING Prof. Heiner Zimmermann, Tobias Birgersson, Karl Hallberg, Lina Söderberg, Prof. Rick Smith, Urmas Lüüs, Nils Hint, Eve Margus-Villems, Piret
Hirv, John Grayson, Ambrose Burne
Ashleigh McCulloch, Margarita Malliri, Yu Fang Hu & Tshepiso Lekganyane
Englischer Garten 1A 12.03 -15.03
Reichenbachstraße 36, Munich, Germany
Opening 12.03 18:00
Opening with drinks and appetisers 12.03 18:30
Wed-Sat 11:00-20:00, Sun 12:00-15:00
Ashleigh Mcculloch, Coptic Necklace, Silver and gold plated bronze cast of an Ethiopian coptic cross. Handmade silver chain. Part of a final series on colonisation, 2018
CO Why do you think it’s important to show your
Ashleigh Mcculloch, Indigo Necklace, gold plated bronze and silver casts of a Tuareg amulet, handmade silver chain, 2018
It’s not a big bold plan. It is a simple belief that we are stronger together, that we can and we should relate to people across borders.
Work by Tobias Birgersson
Sharing is Caring is actually an exhibition, within the realm of metal, produced by the faculty members for the four schools. We have all taught at each others schools, therefore we share, as makers, with each other and with each others’ students. We believe that we should do things together, that we should share knowledge, that we should share culture.
Leslie Shershow, Lazy River, Aluminum, sterling silver, iridescent film, resin, paint, 2020, Leslie Shershow
Become a passenger in a mobile exhibiton featuring ten artists from the United States borderlands – who all use jewellery to convey ideas about observation, experience, fantasy, time, limitations, and the body.
CURRENT OBSESSION How did the concept for the exhibition come about?
JESS TOLBERT & KERIANNE QUICK Are you familiar with the American game show Cash Cab? It’s an actual taxi in NYC that picks up unwitting fares. When you get in, the cab lights up all crazy and the driver turns into a game show host where you win cash if you answer trivia questions correctly while you are driven to your destination. Chance/surprise is key. We love the idea that a similar set up could be applied to art viewing – where you are unexpectedly exposed to something. It’s been a fantasy of ours to do a ‘jewellery cab’ exhibition not only for our own community but one day for the broader public.
Jessica Andersen, Empty Frames, Picture, Frames, Brass, Steel, 2020, Jessica Andersen
Since we also both live in the border region of the US we have been talking about doing a show of border artists. We put the two together. Passenger relates to the mode of exhibiting, as well as the artists and their work. A passenger has a very different role than the driver/pilot/ conductor/etc., and we were interested in the idea of observation, navigation, experience, and limitation - related to artists who experience life and making in the borderlands of the US/ Mexico.
CO What are some of the different approaches the artists are taking with regard to interpreting the theme of ‘Passenger’?
JT It ranges from the personal, literal, emotional, & fantastical, hopeful, resentful, challenging... KQ It really shows in the writing each artist did about their pieces. When viewers get onto the Passenger vehicle they will be guided by the onboard concierge through the exhibition. Each artist's writing will be read aloud as the viewers/ passengers experience the works.
CO Tell us about the exhibitions’ intentions, in terms of jewellery selection and presentation?
PASSENGER Cassandra Adame, Haydee Alonso, Jessica Andersen, Ale Carrillo-Estrada, Alexandra Perez Demma, Maru Lopez, Kerianne Quick, Nance Rodriguez, Leslie Shershow, Jess Tolbert Hop into the PASSENGER bus at the following stops: MJW Head Quarters – Amore Bar, Barerstraße at the Pinakothek der Moderne (at the large red sculptures), Galerie Biro, Kunstgiesserei (The Foundry). You will be conveyed to your next stop while being guided through the PASSENGER exhibition. 11.03 – 13.03 Wed-Fri 12:00-16:00
JT We are focused on the geographical region of the & US/Mexico Southwest border. The reality of the KQ border is blurry, even messy sometimes; painful and beautiful; totally permeable for some and a blank spot for others. Passenger represents the physical reality of being conveyed, but is also a metaphor for what we witness when we are along for a ride. Think about what you do when you ride in a car or bus. You might be the navigator, the DJ, the snack curator… You don’t have to pay attention to the road. Passenger is a space of contemplation. Even a dream space. For the exhibition, we selected artists and works that bear witness. Watching from the window…. Pointing out the features of the view, reflecting, daydreaming.
Natural Grace Mariko Kusumoto, Coral necklace polyester fabric 2020
Mariko Kusumoto’s incredibly light and voluminous work has travelled the world since her last exhibition at Micheko Gallery in 2018. We are excited to see what she has been working on and caught up with the artist to ask a few questions about her upcoming show.
CURRENT OBSESSION What are the intentions of the exhibition in terms of the span of the work you will be showing? Mariko Kusumoto: I want my work to be accessible to the widest possible audience, so I will be bringing pieces that meet a range of budgets.
CO Could you tell me more about the title, ‘Natural Grace’ and why you chose it?
MK The pieces are very much inspired by and in-
fluenced by nature, so it seemed like the most fitting title.
CO Why do you think it’s important to show your work during MJW?
MK Munich is one of the world's most sophisticated
Mariko Kusumoto, Blue bubble brooch polyester fabric 2019
cities, and MJW attracts the leading artists and artisans, as well as the most knowledgeable art lovers and collectors, from all over the world. MJW provides a valuable opportunity to not only present my work to a truly international audience, but to also interact with the community of jewellery artists. I think it is one of the most important events for contemporary jewellers.
In this exhibition, a wild crew of jewellery artists will merge their expansive worlds in a 120-square-metre presentation. Acrylic, palladium, pearl, silver, sand, stone, silicone, urethane, crystal, copper, titanium and glass will be churned into a delightful Life Soup. Jump on in! The primordial soup is just fine! ‘Rising from the miasmic viscera, scrolling on the infinity of imagination, surrounding the forms of sensuality, burning in the boiling depths of volcanoes, crystalising in the depths of a microwave, growing from the experimentation of the lab, verging on the edge of the ethereal, intertwining with the sacral, blooming from the reflections of petroleum, or even crawling through diamond dust; all these vanitases travel through the elements to finally take shape in our vivid world.’
CO Tell us about the exhibitions’ intentions, in terms of jewellery selection and presentation?
CO Could you tell us about the list of artists? What brings this group together?
LIFE SOUP he selection of artists is wide – it takes a lot of fire to boil T 120 square metres. From recently graduated to affirmed in the fashion industry, and including multidisciplinary artists, the exhibition gathers many ways to do jewellery. Rather than a strictly defined curation, it’s more of a gluttonous one.
Maxime Leblanc ignited the spark as soon as he found a special mixture to play with. Marguerite Bones then joined the project and gathered a team of more mixture experts excited by this unusual task: Colombe d’Humières, Margherita Chinchio, Lorette Colé Duprat, Guillaume Gouerou, Danielle Karlikoff, Simon Marsiglia, Keef Palas, Lisa Plaut and Florence Tétier. The brewing art is part improvisation, and while the soup is starting to fume, our magmatic substance will take its definitive form on the spot in Munich. We heard the jewellery crowd there is hungry for something savoury.
Life Soup group image
Mariko Kusumoto, Pink Bubble necklace Polyester fabric 2020
Life Soup is a sobriquet for the prebiotic broth, the common denominator of every known life form. It is meant to be a delicious, ongoing encounter with several flavours. Each piece is an ingredient that
flourishes and spices the final stew. Even though they meet in the same pot, they were cooked in different kitchens, with different methods. All tastes are to be relished!
NATURAL GRACE Mariko Kusumoto Micheko Galerie Theresienstraße 18
Kreative Quartier, Halle 6
Marguerite Bones, Margherita Chinchio, Lorette
Dachauer Straße 112, Munich, Germany
Opening 10.03 16:00-21:00
Colé Duprat, Colombe D'humières, Guillaume
Vernissage 2.03 19:00
Wed-Fri 11:00-19:00, Sat-Mon 11:00-16:00
Gouerou, Danielle Karlikoff, Maxime Leblanc,
Jazz concert 13.03 19:30
After 16.03 see regular opening hours online
LowLov, Florence Tétier, Lisa Plaut & guests
10.03 – 04.04
Artist talk on Fri 13.03 at 14:00 (English only)
Fri- Sun 12:00-19:00
Typhaine le Monnier, photo by Teresa Santos
Next Door Galerie Door shows contemporary art and art jewellery from (inter)national artists and designers, both young talent and established names. You will discover experimental and conceptual work, art that is at the edge of autonomous visual art and applied art. For the opening of this spring show in Munich the artists represented by Galerie Door were invited to make an artwork referring to the theme: next door. The ‘door’ leading to interpretations from a rite of passage, a transition, a hole, and an opening. Galerie Door invites you to come in and open your door!
Door’ and share some of the different approaches/ interpretations the artists have taken?
DT The gallery is called ‘door’, it is named after my
Elena Gorbunova, Helen Habtay, Hartog &
Grandmother. I am named after her, my name is also ‘Doreen’. The concept behind ‘The Door’ in Dutch is you step into it and go further, it is an opening with a transitional quality. The door also has a physical purpose and meaning, you use it to lock your home and be safe. So to merge the conceptual and physical meanings you can use a door to step into a new world and I think one of the abilities of art is to open up and allow for new ways for new influences to enter our worlds. ‘The Door’ has a dual nature, the door is either open or closed.
Henneman, Mielle Harvey, Maria Hees, Colombe
CURRENT OBSESSION What are the intentions of the exhibition in terms of the selection of artists and what brought this group together?
NEXT DOOR Klara Brynge, Eva Burton, Tatjana Giorgadse,
d'Humieres, Idiots (Afke Golsteijn and Floris Bakker), Taehee In, Jutta Kallfelz, Typhaine le Monnier, Holly O'Hanlon, Jiun You Ou, Sonia Pibernat, Darja Popolitova, Uwe Poth, Philip Sajet, Elwy Schutten, Danni Schwaag, Coco Sung, Robean Visschers, Valérie Wagner, Qi Wang, Inette van Wijck, Kun Zhang Galerie Door guest of Galerie Karin Sach Augustenstraße 48 Wed-Sun 10:00-19:00, 11.03 Meet and Greet – Typhaine le Monnier & Jutta Kallfelz 12.03 Meet and Greet
CO Could you talk about how the work is going to be presented and why?
Klara Brynge & Mielle Harvey 13.03 Meet and Greet Coco Sung, Taehee In & Sonia Pibernat
DOREEN TIMMERS I am responsible for selecting the
DT There is a dutch artist, Robean Visschers, that
artists, so it is a personal choice, influenced by what I like and my artistic preferences. My selection is based first, on the ‘visual quality’. The visual language between contemporary art and contemporary jewellery is the same. When I look at a piece, I need to see more than just one story behind it, I need to be tickled by the work to think about what I am seeing.
uses silver coins in his work, he made them into pins which he calls ‘King-Pins’. His work cleverly reacts to the act of going to Munich to present the show, whilst simultaneously interpreting the brief of ‘Next Door’; commenting on countries being physical neighbours, he refers to Germany as the ‘Girl-Next-Door’.
I like art that triggers me or when there is a bit of an edgy point to it, not just when it is visually pleasing. Secondly, the decision is made based on craftsmanship; I also find it very important to regard the sculptural quality therefore it needs to be well made and thoughtful.
Another artist, Jutta Kallfelz carved a rabbit and a mole out of box wood. Both of these creatures dig holes into the earth, in a way they try to hide- her pieces connote that the ‘door’ is closed. Her work is also about tactility and is inspired by the fur of creatures as well. These artists are the perfect examples of both visual and conceptually layered pieces of contemporary jewellery.
CO Can you tell us more about the concept of ‘Next
14.03 video show – Colombe d’Humieres 15.03 video show – Darja Popolitova
Ehrensäbel mit markgräflich-badischem Wappen, Paris, Anfang 19. Jh., Badisches Landesmuseum Karls ruhe, Foto Thomas Goldschmidt
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OHMYBLUE CONTEMPORARY JEWELRY IN VENICE
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