A Week of Indulgence

“Unpacking the Language of Things” 12/13 April 2018 organised by Sian van Dyk, Curator at The Dowse, Lower Hutt

“NO FILTER” 9 – 15 April 2018 organised by Occupational Artists, Wellington

On the world scale of events it would be a micro-particle but in the contemporary jewellery community this past April with “Unpacking the Language of Things” and NO FILTER happening in Wellington/Lower Hutt has been a rare gem and has deepened relations in an art field hard to categorise. The question of where to position contemporary jewellery frequently arises. Nevertheless, sitting on the boundaries between the craft and the fine art sectors, there seems to be an unusual family-like bond between artists, gallerists, curators, collectors and art critics and authors.

  What is it that is so fascinating about contemporary jewellery? Fashion and jewellery have always been a way to express an individual statement and societal belonging as well as show or hide the wearer’s current disposition. While traditional fine jewellery might be based on material value and craftsmanship and therefore limited in expression, art is seen as an expression of Zeitgeist but might not have any connection to the body and wearability. Is it therefore the freedom of using any material in any shape or form, exploring the connection to the body with or without a critical context that makes contemporary jewellery more than just a body adornment?

One statement stuck with me:

“This object grabbed my attention and just needed to be worn.”

Therefore it was put on a string and proudly worn…… 

Jewellery, perhaps the most personal of all the arts