Contemporary art can be cynical, aggressive, vulgar, depressing, disturbing. It has at least one of these characteristics: it is society-oriented; participative; interdisciplinary; conceptual; beyond the art-craft boundary; crowdfunded; synergy-oriented; ephemeral; appropriative; technology-friendly. Jewelry art should be judged by the same standards that apply to visual art.
To survive as a jeweler, you need people to like, buy, and wear your art. Unworn, jewelry is the script of a film that will never be produced, screened, or watched. You cannot 'use' jewelry without owning it. Jewelry's potential to change the viewer's perspective unfolds through the trinity of the Maker, the Buyer, and the Beholder, that is, the public eye. To paraphrase Jenny Holzer's Truisms that "your actions are pointless if no one notices them," your jewelry is pointless if no one buys it.

No jeweler can avoid the influence of promotion and sale strategies. It is difficult to be anti-conformist and successful in the luxury business. It requires nothing less than casting an innovative eye over art, like Malcolm McLaren and Vivien Westwood did in the 1970s by turning the punk movement into an icon of the avant-garde.
The jewelry artist's million-dollar question is: how can I be both critical and sustainable, challenging and pleasing, approachable and rebellious? Answer this, and you will conquer the highly competitive art jewelry market.

Order the digital or print version of Issue #02


Selected articles of Issue #02


15 JUNE 2022

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