As a student of the Jewellery Department, I try to gain full understanding of my subject. In order to do that, it is important to go back to the origins. This is also the method I use when approaching a problem. Jewellery is a complex field where on each end someone is trying to push the boundaries of what we consider jewellery. This fact raised the urge in me to find out where jewellery came from in order to understand what it really is.
Considering the extensive history of adornment through the ages, it is hard to think of donning jewellery as anything less than a human need. It appears embedded across religions, cultures, rites, and throughout human activity. It is worn as adornment, to show status or belonging, as a memento and so on. In some instances, societal prescriptions about not wearing any jewellery, or restrictions around the type of ornament a person is allowed to wear, tell an equally strong story about the power and impact of jewellery. The drive goes deeper than the individual reasons that a certain country or religion might produce a given ornament. My belief, supported by historical examples and anecdotes, is that the motivation for jewellery making and wearing is actually quite primal and that this creative instinct speaks to our animalistic nature. In exploring these ideas, I also delve into my own desire to be part of this ongoing history and to create wearable pieces. I am interested in things that endure for long periods, that are maintained in our culture without question, and which are established in our lives as axioms.
Another theme for me is animals. There are similarities of character between Man and animals. Man learned from animals. When we compare the purely visible aspect of jewellery to the most obvious example in animal kingdom, the peacock, it is clear that visual attraction is of major importance. Perhaps we adopted this behaviour from our animal friends. The lion has his mane, the deer his antlers and the peacock tries to impress his female companions with its amazing range of feathers. Man’s power is also related to visual display. The ability to consume, to drive fast cars, to wear sharp clothing, is directly related to the sexual virility or a man or woman. Those who do not have this power, who lack money, become faceless. In his Theory of Evolution, Darwin states that it is more likely for a more attractive male to mate with a female than for one who is physically stronger. To this day you get a pin if you are a brave fighter in a war, the mayor gets a special kind of chain around his neck, top sportsmen are being visually underlined with gold, silver or bronze. What fascinates me most about animals is that they are entirely led by their instincts. When making jewellery I am aiming to get into that state as well.