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Pas « Le dit du Genji », mais bien mieux : le « Dit du Bijou » ! – rencontre – Paris – 30 mai 2010

triple happiness : live jewellery, chatroom with canapés, Paris, France, ze world

Pour ceux qui n’y auraient encore jamais participé, il s’agit de se donner rendez-vous une fois par mois pour se voir, échanger des informations et discuter d’un sujet particulier.Tous ceux qui s’intéressent de près au bijou sont les bienvenus, praticiens et pratiquants, ainsi que ceux qui s’y intéressent de plus loin: historiens, commissaires, journalistes, chercheurs etc…

Prochain rendez-vous:  le dimanche 30 mai à partir de 18H  (le débat commencera à 19H30)
Autour d’un verre de vin accompagné d’une tartine de terrine

La Table D’Aligre
11 place d’Aligre
Paris 75012
01 43 07 84 88


A part les infos à échanger (compet, foire, expos… ), la discussion proposée pour cette première édition est la suivante : Le temps et la technique définissent-ils notre pratique?

Pour assister à ce rendez-vous, il vous suffit d’appeler le restaurant le dimanche matin au plus tard pour signaler votre présence.PAF 5 euros.

Brune BOYER (06 81 01 91 62) & Benjamin Lignel (06 17 88 73 83)

After a year off, the confidential, underground parisian and artisan get-together « Dit du Bijou » will kick off again, on a monthly basis : its aim is to exchange updates on the state of jewellery world affairs, and discuss a given theme.
You are extremely welcome if you are directly concerned with jewellery – and just as extremely welcome if you are less directly concerned with it (historians, curators, journalists, and their dentist, baker and astronaut friends will be given an extra helping of red wine to feel comfortable).

The next meeting is

Sunday May 30th, from 18h00 onwards (the themed discussion will start at 19h30)
A glass of wine and a portion of terrine will be exchanged against your completely voluntary contribution of 5 euros

the place:

La Table D’Aligre
11 place d’Aligre
Paris 75012
01 43 07 84 88

Nearest tube: Faidherbe Chaligny.
Nearest Airport: Paris Orly
Nearest contemporary jewellery gallery : Hélène Porèe, rue de l’Odéon

Aside from the info bulletin (please come with an update on what you are up to : we want to know), the discussion that was chosen for this first encounter is the following:

Do time and technique define our practice?

If you want to come, please call the restaurant on the Sunday morning at the latest to confirm your presence. They need to kill the scapegoats and stew the rabbits for the terrine, you see.

Brune Boyer / Benjamin Lignel  (Written by Brune/Ben – 19.05.2010)


virus de la COMPARAISON ? … Ana Cardim / Benjamin Lignel

Classé dans : Ana CARDIM (PT),Benjamin LIGNEL (FR),COMPARAISON,virus de la COMPARAISON — bijoucontemporain @ 0:09

SurpriseClin doeilemoticoneInnocent

Ana Cardim, Pin 'I'm a jewel' , 2007: Ana Cardim -pin ‘I am a Jewel’ – Paper, metal, plastic 2007

Benjamin Lignel - Brooch 'Support your local jeweller 2006' - set of 2 badges (edition de 150)Benjamin LIGNEL -Broche ‘Support your local jeweller’ 2006- set of 2 badges (edition de 150)





COLLECT 2010 – annual fair for contemporary craft – Saatchi Gallery, London (UK) 14-17 mai 2010

Relaunched at the Saatchi Gallery in May 2009, COLLECT has an enviable reputation as a premier, annual fair for contemporary craft. Through its presentation of work from the best international applied artists, COLLECT has become a prestigious event in the international cultural calendar gaining the respect and support of many private collectors, museum curators and galleries.

COLLECT 2010 - annual fair for contemporary craft - Saatchi Gallery, London (UK) 14-17 mai 2010 dans Arek WOLSKI (PL) collect_logo

This year over 400 artists will exhibit work at COLLECT, represented by galleries from the UK and Ireland, Central Europe and Scandinavia as well as the United States, Japan and Australia. First-time exhibitors for 2010 include the Netherland’s Flatland Gallery and London’s Galerie Besson. COLLECT 2010 is also delighted to welcome back Swedish gallery blås&knåda, London-based Cockpit Arts, Ruthin Craft Centre from Wales and Liverpool’s Bluecoat Display Centre. COLLECT 2010 will cover all disciplines including ceramics, glass, jewellery, silver and fine metalwork, textiles, and wood and furniture.

COLLECT 2010 exhibiting galleries:
Alternatives Gallery, Italy | blås&knåda, Sweden | Bluecoat Display Centre, UK | Bullseye Gallery, USA | Clare Beck at Adrian Sassoon, UK | Cockpit Arts, UK | Collection Ateliers d’Art De France, France | Contemporary Applied Arts, UK | craftscotland, UK | Cultural Connections CC, UK | Dovecot Studios, UK | Electrum Gallery, UK | Flatland Gallery, Netherlands | Flow, UK | Galerie Besson, UK | Galerie Louise Smit, Netherlands | Galerie Marzee, Netherlands | Galerie Ra, Netherlands | Galerie Rob Koudijs, Netherlands | Galerie Rosemarie Jäger, Germany | Galerie S O, London | Galerie Sofie Lachaert, Belgium | Galleria Norsu, Finland | Galleri Format, Norway | Gallery Kunst1, Norway | Glass Artists’ Gallery, Australia | Joanna Bird Pottery, UK | Katie Jones, UK | Lesley Craze Gallery, UK | Marsden Woo Gallery, UK | National Craft Gallery, Ireland | Ruthin Craft Centre, UK | Sarah Myerscough Fine Art, UK | Terra Delft Gallery, Netherlands | The Scottish Gallery, UK | Yufuku Gallery, Japan

29145_394281933908_729948908_3882181_2884565_n dans Benjamin LIGNEL (FR)
Mette Saabye – « Ocean of Birds » Necklace 2010


Jeweller members of Klimt02 present at Collect 2010
Tobias Alm, Fabrizio Tridenti, Mari Ishikawa, Hanna Hedman, Lina Peterson, Christa Lühtje , Helen Britton, John Iversen, Benjamin Lignel, Arek Wolski, Mette Saabye, Terhi Tolvanen, Doris Betz, Estela Saèz Vilanova, Ralph Bakker, Beppe Kessler, Iris Eichenberg, Iris Bodemer, Sara Borgegard, Willemijn de Greef, Ruudt Peters, Philip Sajet, Lucy Sarneel, Julia Walter, Karl Fritsch, Constanze Schreiber, Bettina Speckner, Peter Hoogeboom, Gemma Draper, Ted Noten, Katja Prins, Felieke van der Leest, Francis Willemstijn, Sebastian Buescher.

fdb650a2 dans Beppe KESSLER (NL)
John Iversen – « joint effort » bracelet – silver, 18k yellow gold


Saatchi Gallery
King’s Road
SW3 4SQ – London (UK)
Telephone: +44 (0) 207 806 2500
Fax: +44 (0) 207 837 6891


« star nationale »! Benjamin Lignel, AJF interview 2010 ‘Also known as Jewellery’ exhibition

que dis-je …. internationale !!!
bon, profitons-en ! ;-)

Benjamin Lignel is curator of Also Known As Jewellery*, an exhibition of French contemporary jewelry that has been traveling the world.

« What is Also Known As Jewellery*?
Also known as Jewellery
is a traveling exhibition of French contemporary jewelry. It features work by 17 makers, who are either French, or have lived in France for long enough to fool the baker when buying their baguette in the morning. The work selected was created, with very few exceptions, within three years of the project’s inception, and is meant to showcase what we described in the catalogue as the ‘more conceptual’ branch of French contemporary jewelry: i.e. jewelry which puts the practice itself at the heart of its experiments. The show was curated by Christian Alandete and myself: he trained as a curator, and has numerous exhibition projects to his name (both in the applied and the fine arts), I trained in art history and furniture design. It was one of the first projects undertaken in the name of the recently created la garantie, an association for jewellery

Where has it traveled?
The exhibition was launched in March 2009 at Flow, in London, and was then hosted by Alternatives in Rome, and Velvet da Vinci, in San Francisco. Our last host will be Idar-Oberstein’s Villa-Bengel, where the show will spend the summer, after a brief but most exciting stop at the Institut Français of Munich, where it is currently presented to coincide with the famed handwerksmesse (from the 3rd to the 9th March).

The first three venues are commercial galleries which were part of the project from the word go. In fact, the word go would not have been uttered had they not enthusiastically endorsed the project: they opened their doors to us, funded the invitations and opening party, were responsible for reception and re-shipment of work, and took care of local public relations. Given the nature of the exhibition, and its rather low commercial viability, theirs was a very big commitment (for which we are really, really grateful). The latter two venues have no commercial interest in the venture: they must have found the project solid and interesting enough to host it.
To show in such different places – different both in terms of gallery set-up and audience – almost means doing five different shows: for even if the pieces had remained the same throughout (they did not), the exhibition itself would have been re-configured to suit each gallery, and re-modeled – as it were – by the very contrasted expectations of each population of visitors.
How did the exhibition and catalogue come about?
I suggested the idea for a ‘French’ show to Yvonna Demczynska, the owner of Flow gallery, during the vernissage of an Italian show she hosted in 2008. No one participating in the conversation could remember seeing a French show: in fact, very few knew the work of more than a couple of French jewelers. This in turn determined the dual agenda of the project: give French jewelers as much exposure abroad as possible, and provide visitors with a comprehensive critical tool to access their work: hence the long tour on the one hand, and the catalogue on the other.

The original plan also included a French stopover, for our French contemporaries are painfully ignorant of the fact that such a thing as contemporary jewelry exists (there are exceptions – you know who you are – and things are improving slightly, but there is quite some way to go). This has not yet materialized, and may prove to be the one big frustration of the project.
 Why did you think it was important to undertake this project?
Recent projects have given the French jewelry ‘community’ a sense of itself (notably, the exhibition Un vrai Bijou organized by Christian in 2005, which brought together 51 makers), and shown that excellent – if confidential – work is being made in France. Yet, while French makers have been thriving creatively, given the adverse odds they face, they do so in relative insularity: the French scene is too small to attract much foreign attention, and its proponents are not well represented abroad. This isolation is a complete anomaly in a very international field, and we therefore thought that showing these makers’s work as a group to the outside world would prove salutary to both it, and them: i.e. by providing international exposure to those artists who have had little of it, and by making their work part of the current world-wide conversation on, and with, contemporary jewelry.

How did you select the jewelers for the exhibition? The writers for the catalogue?
Certainly, the selection reflects the aesthetical and conceptual affinities of Christian and myself: we both like work that tiptoes the invisible fault-lines between craft, fine arts and design, and which makes the most of that ambiguous position. This is a very vague selection parameter: we did not particularly care to have a coherent, seamless selection, but only that the work be of a very high standard, and that the exhibition reflect the diversity of experimental approaches present in France. The selection itself was quite simple – simplified to some extent by the limited number of makers, and further by the clear artistic choices that all of them have made. By no means does it represent the whole spectrum of French jewelry, contemporary or not.

As said before, producing a catalogue was fundamental to the project. We wanted to provide visitors (or readers) with multi-layered information about each artist, and chose an editorial approach that favored individual practice over a group study. In effect, the catalogue is made up of seventeen folded and rubber-bound posters. It can be read as you would a book, by leafing through the pages in sequence; or taken apart and enjoyed as a set of posters.
Each poster is treated as a self-standing publication, featuring a series of studio pictures shot specially for the catalogue (and in some cases pictures of older work for added background), a portrait of the individual artists wearing one of their pieces, a short C.V. and a 500 words essay written for the publication. Makers were offered the possibility of suggesting a writer (some did), but in most cases they were ‘matched’ with writers we felt would do their work justice, chosen from a wide range of disciplines: poet, artist, sociologist, philosopher, historian, anthropologist, gallery owner, curator. While looking for seventeen writers, coming at them with the bargaining power of two beggars on the dole, we found, surprisingly, that a lack of institutional interest for jewelry wetted the appetite of researchers. It afforded them a sort of intellectual terra incognita with more than circumstantial relevance to their ‘legitimate’ areas of research. Only two people turned us down out of nineteen who were approached.
How would you summarize the argument that Also Known As Jewellery* makes about contemporary jewelry in France?
I don’t think it makes one argument about contemporary jewelry in France : it makes seventeen of them – each one with its own history, and very individual ways to relate to the larger phenomenon of international contemporary jewelry (they had been starved, now they want food)

Do you think that nationality is a very useful way to think about contemporary jewelry? What is French about French contemporary jewelry?
The case for national ‘traits’, or ‘creative identity’, is a dubious one today, unless one is dealing with either a fairly rigid educational system, a concerted effort to perpetuate a vernacular style, or an artistic agenda that aims to (co-) produce a form of cultural identity. (I say ‘today’, because one cannot argue away the existence of, say, a Flemish school of painting – the product, I would argue, of a different information age, and a different relationship to territory.) A country is often too large a place and its frontiers too porous. More importantly, maybe, I have not found in my contemporaries the desire to exude ‘Frenchness’, whatever that may be. I did find some common fields of enquiry (gender, identity), a pretty conceptual bend (a self-fulfilling prophecy, as this was a selection parameter), a certain economy of means they all seem to share – but nothing as conclusive as the smell of a ripe camembert.

If there is such a thing as heritage, or lineage, I would argue that its strands are best seen in the tutor/student relationship. Contemporary jewelry is unusual (compared to design, say, or the fine arts) as long teaching tenures on the one hand, and a relative scarcity of schools on the other have allowed teachers to thrive, and their varied influence on students to be both quite visible and visible over time. Brune Boyer and Sophie Hanagarth in France, Otto Künzli in Germany, Caroline Broadhead in England are good examples of a ‘background’ that informs the way students approach the trade, and allows them to bloom.
Has it been successful?
Contrary to popular wisdom, I believe that translation is invigorating for any work of art – showing work coming from place A in place B, and finding how re-location has affected its capacity to inspire. From that point of view, the show’s success has been spectacular, as it engaged – and was commented on by – three very different crowds at its openings. A very academic crowd in London, necessarily well equipped to ‘get’ the show as a whole, and to relate to individual pieces; they were kind enough to acknowledge that French jewelry did, in fact, exist, bless them. In Rome, a mix of regular clients and uninitiated guests, who found themselves irked and excited in almost equal measures by conceptual propositions that are quite alien to the subtle material poems and technical pyrotechnics that are the hallmark of the Padua school. A roster of militant collectors and jewelry lovers in San Francisco, very sympathetic to the agendas of some of the makers (gender, corporeal identity), and quite committed to saying so.

Along the way, all of the 70-odd pieces featured in the show have been re-evaluated, re-interpreted, and re-appropriated by the curators who followed the exhibition, the spaces it was shown in, and the visitors who came to see it. I personally found it extremely rewarding and not a little surprising to see how context could modify the impact of different pieces. Munich will certainly be an interesting test, as the exhibition has to compete with many other equally seductive propositions . . .«  ( interview by Damian Skinner )

(Art Jewelry Forum)


EXPO ‘Homeland’ – Galerie Schumm-Braunstein, Paris (FR) – 27 mars-12 mai 2010

Artist Flavia Fenaroli has invited Benjamin Lignel and Fabrizio Tridenti, together forming the exhibition « Homeland » at Galerie Schumm-Braunstein, Paris.

EXPO Homeland

«  «On peut soutenir que le passé est un pays d’où nous avons tous émigré, que sa perte fait partie de notre humanité commune »
La question du livre, de sa permanence, de sa pérennité, de sa fragilité, celle de la bibliothèque, de son lieu et de sa perte, sont des thèmes récurrents dans l’œuvre de Flavia Fenaroli. Lors de l’exposition « Entre-deux », en 2008, nous avions montré le Livre hermétique et la première des Stèles, où est incisée dans le plomb la liste interminable des destructions de bibliothèques : premières œuvres de sa « Bibliothèque errante ».
Avec «Homeland», nous présentons le Cabinet de lecture, monumentale sculpture dressée, faite d’un nombre incalculable de bandes d’acier, bandes d’enregistrement de textes illisibles, inaudibles, impénétrables. Au sol, trois dalles en acier supportent, pour deux d’entre elles, de larges feuilles de plomb où sont ciselés des textes de Pétrarque. Dans Macula, ces textes fondateurs de l’humanisme ont leur empreinte déposée sur la plus délicate des feuilles de papier japon : combien de temps en gardera-t-elle la trace ? Quant aux bandes magnétiques elles recèlent, dans leurs somptueux enserrements verrouillés, des mots comme Silence, encore, parfois.
Les Aiutanti (‘Assistants’, petits objets, souvenirs ou talismans) sont de petites sculptures de bandes d’enregistrement débordant d’un cadre en acier, des bracelets, Cerotti (‘pansements’), où sont recueillis des extraits de Profanations de Giorgio Agamben. Homeland est une collection qui associe livre et «objet de migration». Chaque objet-bijou est lié à un livre dans lequel l’artiste invite un migrant à raconter sa vie et intervient avec des photogravures. Celui dont le corps portera un objet Homeland permettra également à cette parole d’être entendue, pour un temps.
Pour ouvrir sa réflexion, Flavia Fenaroli a invité deux jeunes artistes talentueux, Benjamin Lignel
(FR) et Fabrizio Tridenti (IT), qui créent des Sculptures-qu’on-peut-aussi-appeler-des-bijoux.

Benjamin Lignel, designer qui s’intéresse à la fonction du bijou et à ses contextes d’usage, a constitué une sorte de famille élargie d’objets singuliers, traitant de différents aspects de l’ornement du corps. Il propose ici ses pièces Inventaire et Ex-voto.
Fabrizio Tridenti crée dans l’improvisation des bijoux qui sont des pièces uniques, chacune étant l’expression d’un parcours nouveau et expérimental. Face à la question de l’usure du temps, de l’extension dans l’espace, il a choisi de dialoguer avec le travail de Flavia en présentant la série Inside-Outside, pièces de bronze peintes, et ses derniers bijoux de papier.
La galerie SCHUMM-BRAUNSTEIN a le grand plaisir de réunir les œuvres de ces trois artistes, qui, puisant dans leur exil intérieur, leur « Homeland », nous donnent à voir des créations puissantes, subtiles et sensuelles, entre intimité et altérité.
 » (E. Schumm)

Benjamin Lignel- 'Inventaire' 2009, rings & object -  Stone piano wire, resinFabrizio Tridenti- ring n°1 'In Carta Series' 2009- Cardboard, paper, epoxy resin, iron
Benjamin Lignel- ‘Inventaire’ 2009, rings & object -  Stone piano wire, resin
Fabrizio Tridenti- ring n°1 from the ‘In Carta Series’ 2009- Cardboard, paper, epoxy resin, iron


Galerie Schumm-Braunstein
9 rue de Montmorency
75003 – Paris (France)
Tel : +33 (0)1 40290372


« Message in a jewel ….. » (chanson bien connue) – « Dear JAMES », Munich (DE) 3-7 mars 2010

DEAR JAMES - The James exchange

 » « Dear JAMES » is based around the idea of six artists sending one another a series of letters over a six month period. The contents of the letter in unprescribed, the only stipulations being that that the letter is written intuitively on a given date and posted immediately to a given address. Each artist will use the letters they have received to stimulate the creation of a collection of pieces taking what they will from their fellow artists thoughts and observations. This will result in an exhibition of contemporary Jewellery and Metal work that has been inspired by written words. The complete set of 30 letters will form a snapshot of each of our individual thoughts over a six month period from across the world, only coming together at the first showing of Dear JAMES to form the complete picture alongside the work it has inspired. » (Klimt02 information)

participating artists are  :
Christine Graf (Germany), Lisa Juen (Germany, China), Toni Mayner (UK), Patrick McMillan (USA), Kathryn Partington (UK), Jessica Worley (UK)

The JAMES Exchange
The JAMES Exchange

Atelier Klarastrasse
Atelier Klarastrasse 1 RGB
80636 – Munich (Germany)

Why « JAMES » ??  : « Jewellery  And Metalsmith Enquiry Show » !


Ces bijoux à venir, inspirés par les mots et l’écriture, me font penser à d’autres bijoux, eux aussi des « mots contre les maux ». Ces bijoux visualisent les mots/maux, cela ne veut pas dire que les bijoux où l’on ne voit aucun mot n’aient rien à dire ! Au contraire ! tout bijou est un message …. tout bijou « parle » à celui qui le porte, qui l’a choisi, qu’il a touché ….
Akiko Kurihara  G necklace 2Victoria Contreras Romantic, poetical typographic jewelsEun Yeong Jeong - 'Those sweet words' (paper or plastic EXPO)Ela CINDORUK  - let my words be.. earringsColleen Baran love-letter-ring
Akiko KURIHARA  « 1000 G » necklace
Victoria CONTRERAS Romantic, poetical typographic jewels- each piece featuring a quote by a famous author…
Eun YEONG JEONG – ‘Those sweet words’ 2007 – Silver, Letters from DY(paper), Wool, Nylon Thread
Ela CINDORUK  – let my words be….. earrings
Colleen BARAN- ‘I miss you the second you leave’ ring
Colleen Baran - translation series -Love and Lust Bracelet (2003)-polyester resin, ink, Mylar, acrylicMichaela Niegemann necklace - copper & rubber - uses silhouettes of people who have hurt hermichaela_niegemann necklace - 3michaela_niegemann necklace - 2words- michaela_niegemann necklace
Colleen BARAN – translation series -Love and Lust Bracelet (2003)-polyester resin, ink, Mylar, acrylic -Varied conotations of the words love and lust translated into 26 global languages
Michaela NIEGEMANN necklace – copper & rubber – uses silhouettes of people who have hurt her (1, 2, 3, 4)(on MocoLoco)


Et finissons par ce « bijou » « message-pied-de-nez » de benjamin Lignel ……………. emoticone

Benjamin Lignel - Brooch 'Support your local jeweller 2006' - set of 2 badges (edition de 150)
Benjamin LIGNEL -Broche ‘Support your local jeweller’ 2006- set of 2 badges (edition de 150)


CAGNES-sur-MER (FR) – Espace SOLIDOR – Collection permanente – Musée

Labellisée «Ville Métiers d’Art», Cagnes-sur-Mer s’investit, depuis plus de dix ans maintenant, dans la promotion du bijou contemporain. Les expositions se succèdent ainsi régulièrement à l’Espace Solidor, au pied du Château Grimaldi et accueillent de nombreux artistes français et étrangers de renommée internationale.

Aujourd’hui, le fonds permanent constitué d’œuvres originales acquises au fil de ces événements culturels, offre un regard unique sur le bijou et la création contemporaine. Composé d’or, de pierres précieuses, de métaux divers, de matières composites, de bois et même de papier, le bijou contemporain illustre la maîtrise et le talent des artistes qui le façonnent, au gré de leur inspiration, de leur culture et de leur sensibilité.

Solidor-fonds permanentsolidor-expoCagnesS - regard sur L'Estonie

Récemment, la collection s’est enrichie avec les dernières acquisitions de Kadri Mälk, Tanel Veenre et Piret Hirv de l’exposition «Regard sur l’Estonie» (juin 2007).

Tanel veenreKadri Mälk - brooch -'the order of garter' Cork, silver, synthetic sapphires , smoked quartz, ebonyPiret Hirv - broche 'two' - or

Tanel Veenre – broche
Kadri Mälk – brooch -’the order of garter’ Cork, silver, synthetic sapphires , smoked quartz, ebony
Piret Hirv – broche ‘two’ – or

Ces bijoux, qui dépassent la simple fonction esthétique d’ornement du corps sont à eux-seuls de véritables porteurs de message, aux formes surprenantes et aux matériaux insolites.

Artistes représentés :
Christel Balez – Robert BainesGijs BakkerArlette BaronIris BodemerFrédéric BrahamChristophe BurgerJoaquim Capdevila – Faust Cardinali – Françoise et Claude ChaventCathy ChotardCostanza – Xavier Doménech – Gabriele Dziuba – Eva Eisler – Denis Essayie – Joël Faivre-Chalon – Karl Fritsch – Kyoko Fukuchi – Henri GargatEsty GrossmanSophie HanagarthMari IshikawaGilles Jonemann – Mila Kalnitzkaya – Kepa KarmonaMichaela KirchnerElisabeth KrampeFlorence LehmannPatricia LemaireBenjamin LignelNel Linssen – Michail Maslennikow – Paul McClureAmandine Meunier – Astrid Meyer – Ted NotenRitsuko OguraSuzanne Otwell-NegreClaude PelletierRamon Puig-Cuyas – Anna Raigorodskaya – Gerd Rothmann – Julie Rouault – Agathe Saint-GironsKiff SlemmonsJanna SyvänojaTorunChristophe VerotWabéAnnamaria ZanellaChristoph Zellweger

Wabé broche papier maché - 2002solidor-Mari Ishikawa-Necklace-Blooming Red-2004- japanese kozo paperCathy Chotard

Wabé broche papier maché – 2002 (bon, pas au musée, c’est la mienne !)
Mari Ishikawa – Necklace-Blooming Red-2004- japanese kozo paper
Cathy Chotard

Place du Château, Haut-de-Cagnes
06800 – Cagnes-sur-Mer
Telephone: +33 4 93 73 14 42
Fax: +33 4 93 22 19 09
M. Roland Constant

chaque exposition qui a lieu à l’Espace Solidor est mise en ligne sur le site de la ville :  onglet “culture”.
(merci de cette précision donnée par l’Espace Solidor :-) )


EXPO ‘UN VRAI BIJOU’ – une « Ecole » Française du bijou ?

Un vrai Bijou !
[ bijoux contemporains en France ]

Monika Brugger- bijou dématérialisé en expérience de lumière

Exposition –
Château-Musée Grimaldi – Cagnes-sur-Mer – Février-Avril 2007
Galerie Artcore > Janvier-Février 2005
Association les 7 péchés capitaux
Commissariat et catalogue : Christian Alandete
Scénographie : François Bouvier

Avec :

Catherine Abrial / Louise Barthelemy / Virginie Bois / Odette Bombardier / Babette Boucher / Brune Boyer-Pellerej / Frédéric Braham / Dominique Brunet / Monika Brugger / Christophe Burger / Véronique Buri / Faust Cardinali / Maria de Castro / Claude + Françoise Chavent / Cirrus / Florence Croisier / Olivier Daunay / Marie Debourge / Ann Gérard / Nathalie Gouliart / Esty Grossman / Morgane Guilcher / Sophie Hanagarth / Ulrike Kampfert / Stéphane Landureau / Florence Lehmann / Patricia Lemaire / Sarah Leterrier / Benjamin Lignel / Monique Manoha / Marie-José Morato / Astrid Meyer / Agnès Moulinot / Oncle John / Laurence Oppermann / Orlan / Suzanne Otwell-Nègre / Juliette Pailler / Bastien Peletier / Claude Pelletier / Karol Pichler / Andréa Pineros / Agathe Saint-Girons / Mildred Simantov+Max Friedman / Martin Szekely / Georges Tsak / Patrick Veillet / Claire Wolfstirn

L’exposition présente pour la première fois, un corpus significatif de «bijoutiers» contemporains travaillant en France, se situant dans une démarche contemporaine et une reflexion par rapport au bijou. L’exposition qui rassemble pour la première fois une cinquantaine d’approches singulières met l’accent sur une pratique parfois radicale et tente de définir la spécificité d’une «école» française.




What does Contemporary Jewellery mean ?

 What does Contemporary Jewellery mean?

Benjamín Lignel Bethel, Metalsmith Magazine, 2006

The following question is part of a questionnaire sent by the Italian Association for Contemporary Jewellery to its members : Italy and France, whilst boasting a long history in high-end jewellery, by and large remained untouched by the experimental jewellery movements of the ’60s (most active in the US, England, and Holland). Today, the studio Jewellery community in both countries remains small, and I found from experience that the otherwise simple task of defining one’s activity is unexpectedly daunting for us, and continues to fuel many of our conversations.

This is a ‘French’ answer to an Italian question, written in English: a nice metaphor for our international community of gold-tinklers, but one which complicates the task of defining jewellery – the English use alternatively design jewellery and contemporary jewellery, the French may say creation (i.e. creative) jewellery, the Italians art goldsmithing, while American readers will prefer art or studio jewelry. Having trained in the UK (and to simplify matters), I used the expression Contemporary Jewellery, though, as you will see, I am not at all convinced that it does the profession much justice.

What does Contemporary Jewellery mean ? dans Benjamin LIGNEL (FR) police_state_badge

William Clark Police State Badge, 1970 and 2005 Sterling silver, 10k gold
Photo: Richard Matzinger

What does Contemporary Jewellery mean?

Not very much, to anyone outside the profession; but the question is a helpful reminder that:
1. In most countries, the debate will never find an audience outside the actual community that launched it.
2. This is a simplistic label, falling short of the profession’s complex heritage and range of interests.
But it’s a tricky one, and I tried to list some of the ways one could answer it:

Contemporary Jewellery is a type of practice – understood as the contemporary offspring of a craft-based design activity that finds its origin in medieval workshops. Such a definition stresses contemporary jewellery’s historical past, and finds antecedents in the British and American Arts & Crafts movements, the renewed late XIXth century interest in manual skills (as a last stand against industrialisation), and the emergence of radical jewellery movements in the 60s: it underlines the notions of individuality, craftsmanship, and its troubled relationship to the production mainstream;

or a type of object: poised between high-street jewellery and art (the former’s glorified other, the latter’s poor relative), we know what it’s not (‘just’ manufactured artifacts for wearing), and what it wants to be (the expression of individual talent that reflects on, and sometimes influences, contemporary culture), much less what it is.

happy_family dans Estela Saez VILANOVA (ES)

Benjamin Lignel – Happy family NHS (two adhesive rings), 2002 Rubber, gauze, ink
Edition of 300 – Photo: Joel Degen

A few distinctive characteristics, however, seem to be beyond debate: the human body as a general working area; an open attitude to methods and material that echoes art’s own agenda, complicated by the notion of wearability; the distinctiveness we associate with individual expression; and an emancipation from consumer goods’ vocation to ‘just’ satisfy consumer desires.

It could also be defined as a market (I follow here the argument that cultural artifacts are defined less by methods of production than by distribution, accessibility and ultimately, potential impact on a larger consumer base). In most countries, a limited number of galleries take care of both distribution and promotion – while the designer-maker is expected (if (s)he wants to make a living) to be represented by at least five galleries, and complement consignment sales by direct, off-the-anvil transactions. From my point of view, the Contemporary Jewellery market works in ways similar to the art market, but on a scale so small, that its lack of visibility questions its existence.

hand dans Leonor HIPOLITO (PT)

Estela Saez Vilanova – GBN  -Silver, wool, paint

So then: most jewellers would agree that Contemporary Jewellery is a fast-evolving profession at a crossroad between craft, design, and art, currently ridged by identity concerns. However, I think that the problem, rather than one of identity, is one of image. Although the lack of an established definition has contributed to an extremely rich range of output -personal answers to a collective question- it seems that diversity stands in the way of a more cohesive front, one that would focus on explaining to people that there is a life after Cartier, Pomellato and Tiffany’s. And the unsuspecting public still lumps the practice together with its craft-based past, judges its production on a par with high-end (or any other) jewellery, and considers artistic ambition rather like a presumptuous fancy (unless one equates artistic with skilled, meaningful or committed to self-expression).

bag dans Mirla FERNANDES (BR)

Mirla Fernandes – Fe 2008 Latex and mineral pgiments

This happens at least for two reasons:

Firstly, there are not enough of us to rally a larger population to Contemporary Jewellery’s standards: exposure is limited by the output (there are comparatively few jewellery design programs, fewer graduates that stick to the trade, and not many pieces produced per year per jeweller). This scarcity of active jewellery makers is further complicated by our cultural antagonism with serial reproduction -and therefore, bigger distribution 1). A cynical bystander would add: this is a micro-profession, which means little appeal to the press, anemic cultural budgets, no specific courses in the history of Contemporary Jewellery (to my knowledge), and therefore, no history. As a result, Contemporary Jewellery is always deemed a subsidiary activity, on the margin of mainstream jewellery creation. Secondly, designer-makers are by nature a/o trade, uncommunicative, or certainly not prone to enthusiastic pamphlet scribbling. Who’s ever heard of Contemporary Jewellery, outside its confidential network of galleries and specialized clientèle?

Leonor dans Reflexion

Leonor Hipolito – Sin titulo – Silver, cotton

The situation, and this is my point, demands more than just communication: instead of shunning assertive promotion/information strategies (for fear of contamination?), we must resist inertia from within and without that confine Contemporary Jewellery to its ill-defined (but restricting) marginal position, and explore new means of proliferation.

So we should communicate more. And explain our intentions. But in the end, let us not be too intent on defining our practice as one thing only: if anything, I would even drop the Contemporary or Studio used to qualify this jewellery: whatever specific meaning it may have had is now superseded by a vague sense of institutionalized otherness.

Let’s be proud, and call it jewellery.

« Let’s be proud, and call it jewellery«  (photo Sandra Kocjančič)



About the Author : Benjamin Lignel (1972) first trained in philosophy & literature, then in art history, at New York University, and finally in furniture and jewellery design, at the Royal College of Art in London. Hence his interest in the functional object, complicated by a penchant for art, and further perverted by sustained exposures to literary works, often momentous, sometimes pertinent.





 Footnote1) The dominant discourse by jewellers and gallerists alike tend to equate value with uniqueness. While the argument certainly has weight from a mercantile point of view, it seems very outdated when applied to artistic value: not only have multiple editions (either executed by fine artists or copied from original work) been produced since the XVth century, as a way to reach a wider audience, but anyone in today’s contemporary art world trying to champion a pre-Warholian superiority of the unique, hand-made piece would be laughed at. 


SCHMUCK 2010 – Munich (DE) 3-9 mars 2010

The high standards and stunning inventiveness of its participants turn the international special show SCHMUCK into a renowned show case for trends in jewellery art world wide.


SCHMUCK is a special show of the International Trade Fair for the Skilled Trades taking place in Munich in March each year.
Tout le programme (et fichier à décharger) sur la page de Klimt02 (un grand merci !)

Monika brugger - bagues_trousRamon Puig Cuyas - Guighi de nihilo nihil 2007 broochANNAMARIA ZANELLA - bracelet
Monika Brugger bagues trous –Ramon Puig Cuyas broche ‘Guighi de nihilo nihil’ 2007– Annamaria Zanella bracelet

Selected artists : 

Lucia Babjakova, Peter Bauhuis, Doris Betz, David Bielander, Sofia Björkman, Alexander Blank, Marta Boan, Sigurd BrongerMonika Brugger, Doug Bucci, Simon Cottrell, Gemma Draper, Diana Dudek, Iris Eichenberg, Maureen Faye-Chauhan, Jantje Fleischhut, Melanie Georgacopoulos, Andi Gut, Ursula Guttmann, Gésine Hackenberg, Mielle Harvey, Stefan Heuser, John Iversen, Sergey Jivetin, Machteld van Joolingen, Jasleen Kaur, Marie-Louise Kristensen, Felieke van der Leest, Helena Lehtinen, Benjamin Lignel, Anne Lene Løvhaug, Mia Maljojoki, Mikiko Minewaki, Marc Monzó, Shelley Norton, Maria Nuutinen, Michalina Owczarek, Seth Papac,  Matin Papcún, Johanna Persson, Ruudt PetersNatalya Pinchuk, Karen Pontoppidan, Beverley Price, Ramon Puig CuyàsEstela Sáez VilanovaMiro Sazdic, Isabell Schaupp, Bernhard SchobingerPetra Schou, Karin Seufert, Chey Son, Sanna SvedestedtMirei Takeuchi, Annie Tung, Flora Vagi, Tanel Veenre, Andrea Wagner, Annamaria Zanella.

Mikiko Minewaki - necklace 'plachain 2004' - curler - schmuck2010pinky- Mia Maljojoki necklace.jpg
Mikiko Minewaki (JP) necklace ‘pla-chain’
Mia Maljojoki jewelry


Les dernières créations de  Ramon Puig Cuyàs seront visibles du 3 au 9 mars pendant Schmûck 2010

>> Download the complete program of events

(or have quick look at : )

Schmuck 2010
Willy Brandt Allee 1
81829 – Munich
Telephone: +49 (089) 9 49 55-230
Fax: +49 (089) 9 49 55 – 239