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Article: Art jewelry

Art jewelry

Terminology and Concepts

  • Art jewelry is also referred to as contemporary, studio, art, research, design, or author jewelry.
  • Studio jewelry is created by independent artists in small, private studios.
  • Avant-garde jewelry positions itself as ahead of mainstream ideas.
  • Modern or modernist jewelry reflects the spirit of the times.
  • New jewelry assumes an ironic stance towards the past, while contemporary jewelry claims the present.
  • Art jewelers question the concepts of preciousness and wearability in conventional jewelry.
  • They challenge the idea that jewelry's value is tied to the preciousness of its materials.
  • Art jewelers started using alternative materials like aluminum and acrylics in the 1960s.
  • The critique of preciousness led to jewelry becoming more body-conscious.
  • Jewelry lost its exclusiveness to one sex or age and could be worn by anyone.
  • Art jewelry emerged as a reaction to Victorian taste and heavy, ornate jewelry of the 19th century.
  • Art jewelry reflected a country's identity and was part of a larger international design reform movement.
  • The English Arts and Crafts movement produced early arts and crafts jewelry.
  • Arts and crafts jewelers believed in designing and making objects by the same person.
  • Arts and crafts jewelry favored materials with little intrinsic value for artistic effects.
  • Art nouveau jewelry from France and Belgium contributed to art jewelry.
  • Art nouveau jewelry was inspired by symbolist art, literature, and music.
  • René Lalique and Alphonse Mucha were important art nouveau jewelers.
  • Art nouveau jewelry featured curvilinear and dramatic forms.
  • Precious metals and gemstones were often mixed with inexpensive materials in art nouveau jewelry.
  • Art jewelry has its roots in modernist jewelry in the United States in the 1940s.
  • German goldsmiths' artistic experiments in the 1950s also influenced art jewelry.
  • The arts and crafts movement of the late 19th century shares values and beliefs with art jewelry.
  • Art jewelry scenes exist in North America, Europe, Australasia, and parts of Asia.
  • South America and Africa are developing the infrastructure to support art jewelry.

Centers of Art Jewelry Production

  • Wiener Werkstatte in Vienna, Austria
  • Skønvirke movement in Denmark
  • Viking revival in Finland
  • Modernisme in Spain
  • Art jewelry in Italy, Russia, and the Netherlands

Arts and Crafts Jewelry in the United States

  • Popular with amateurs
  • Required modest investment in tools
  • Madeline Yale Wynne, a self-taught jeweler
  • Brainerd Bliss Thresher, another American jeweler
  • Used materials like carved horn and amethyst
  • Followed the example of René Lalique

Decline of Art Jewelry in the 1920s and 30s

  • Overshadowed by art deco
  • Audience response to its functional and aesthetically challenging nature
  • Significant break from previous jewelry styles
  • Laid down values and attitudes for later twentieth-century ideals of art or studio jewelry
  • Art jewelry valued the handmade and prized innovative thinking and creative expression

Modernist Jewelry and Art Jewelry since 1960

  • Emerged in urban centers of the United States in the 1940s
  • Tied to historical events and societal factors like World War II and the Holocaust
  • Modernist jewelry shops and studios in New York City and the Bay Area
  • Audience for modernist jewelry was the liberal, intellectual fringe of the middle class
  • Modern Handmade Jewelry exhibition organized by the Museum of Modern Art in 1946
  • Postwar growth of jewelry in the United States supported by jewelry-making techniques in physical therapy programs for veterans
  • Craft-based education and therapy for soldiers and veterans stimulated the interest in craft
  • Graduates of craft programs challenged conventional ideas of jewelry and taught a new generation of American jewelers
  • Development of architectonic jewelry
  • German government and commercial jewelry industry heavily supported modern jewelry designers in the 1960s-1970s

Art jewelry Data Sources

Reference URL
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