Sunday, April 18, 2010

Schmuck 2010 (PART #2)

So armed with little more than a hangover and my wits I found myself traveling in a pack of unfamiliar people in an unfamiliar land on a train heading towards the Munich Craft Fair. On arrival I was relieved to find that most of my pack where flowing towards the Auto show that was also on, so I bought my ticket and proceeded past the shiny cars and scantly clad women towards Hall A where all my craft needs where to be met.

I worked my way slowly to the back of the exhibition hall, past some interesting and some not so interesting displays, trying to savior the moment before I would actually witness, the often thought of, but far off reality of attending, Schmuck. Of the 59 artists in this annual award showcase, there were some who I recognized instantly, others unfamiliar but excited me all the same, just to see the scope of work and artists on display was, well, pretty bloody awesome. It was interesting to note, perhaps because I was an Australian/ Australien a long way from home, but to see two of our national animals referenced, by two non-Australians, a pink plastic koala in work by Jantje Fleischhut and a ceramic Kangaroo brooch called Australia-Mary has a bigger bag by Marie-Louise Kristensen, made me reconsider my thoughts about how ‘faraway’ Australia really is. Highlights: Felieke van der Leest, Sergey Jivetin and Gesine Hackenberg.

Felieke van der Leest

Schmuck shared the back of the convention centre with Telente and it was a buzz with fresh excitement and approaches. It clearly succeeded in presenting the youthful exuberance of the best in their fields under the age of 30. The total highlight for me was two South Koreans, Semi Kim and Ji Hye Lee, there is just something about the immaculate technique and interesting subject matter that gets me every time. “Frame” was also placed in the back corner of the hall and showcased three of the more influential galleries in Europe, Galerie Marzee (Netherlands), Galerie Platina (Sweden) and Galerie Ra (Netherlands).

One of my first destinations on day two of my trip was Galerie Für Angewandte Kunst that was showing, Nicht Dass Du Mir Von Der Blause Fällst (don’t you dare fall off my blouse) a group show by who, I might consider the ‘parents’ of contemporary jewellery in Munich (and perhaps the rest of the world). Back in 1999 these jewellers got together on the last Wednesday of the month for some beer, food and jewellery chats. It appears that while the members of this group seemed to ebb and flow what was to be “…constant was only the young talent still in training and all jewelry gallery owners, collectors and customers were categorically denied attendance.”[1]. I was rather excited by the exhibition design, it had been a while since I had seen such a considered effort in the display of jewellery, and it was a great solution for such a large space, but honestly can’t remember a single piece from the show. I have often wondered if is it better to have an exhibition stick in your mind because of the wow factor of display and not remember the work as apposed to seeing good work displayed poorly and forgetting the show entirely. Because lets face it, there is a very fine line between these two things, even if the work is great, if the display doesn’t do it justice, it’s just another show.

[1] Klimt02 Community, Don’t You Dare Fall Off My Blouse,, date visited 31st March 2010

to be continued...


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