A couple of weeks ago I was invited to make a piece for an exhibition in Valencia, Spain called ‘Con-Decorados’. The exhibition will be part of a row of shows accompanying the second opening of the ‘Schmuck‘ show from Munich in Valencia. It will be held at the ‘Museo Nacional de Ceramica y de las Artes Suntuarias Gonzalez Marti‘, as part of the celebrations of the 10th anniversary of the Jewellery Department at the ‘Escola d’Art i Superior de Disseny de València’ EASD. To mark this anniversary, the school has organised a programme of activities, exhibitions and talks on contemporary jewellery and called the event ‘MELTING POINT 2012’. ‘Con-Decorados’ will open on the 5th of May at 6pm. To visit the blog accompanying the activities, click here.
The topic of ‘Con-Decorados’ turns around the subject of medals. 23 artists were asked to work with and around the idea of interpreting and creating a medal.
The artists who will participate in this exhibition are:
My idea for my medal came from personal experience. I wanted to create a medal that is a witness of our time, a medal that can be worn and used for a purpose of today.
Until I met my partner, I was a single woman in Shanghai for a very long time and I had to learn the hard way that dating can be really hard work that should be awarded a medal! So… here it is, the ‘Dating Medal’.
…and a short explanation:
Modern society does not make it easy to meet one’s ‘better half’. The Internet, Hollywood and the fast pace of a steadily growing throw-away-culture heightens the bars of expectation when it comes to choosing the right partner.
How can one meet this person without having to bend over backwards?
Dating in the mentioned conditions can be really hard work, especially for girls. The ‘Dating Medal’ is to be a helping device for women dating but is also act as a dating award.
The brooch holds two LED screens: one in green and one in red.
The screens are connected to an ON/ON switch, which enables the wearer to decide which of the two screens is going to light up.
In the case of the lady meeting an individual of interest, the green screen can be lit reading:
‘Did the sun come out or did you just smile at me?’
The sentence can act as an ‘ice-breaker’ leading into a conversation. In the case of the initial chat being a success, the gentleman can take the lady’s contact details written on small paper-strips hanging from the series of brooch-hooks. If he would like to leave his details, he can choose to take one of the plain paper-strips and write down his contact information with the attached pencil. By hanging the written strip back on the hook ‘rewards’ the girl with the possibility of a future date.
In the case of the lady not feeling attracted to an approaching individual, the red screen can be lit reading:
‘Save your breath.’
In this case, a lot of drama and heartbreak can be prevented right from the start.
Not just my dating experience was a little rocky but the way of making the brooch was pretty painful too. Just when I was about to finish the brooch, a piece of the bearing broke off. Since the metal part is entirely cut and bent from one piece of stainless steel sheet, I had to remake the entire brooch.
Here are some pictures I took along the way that show the process of making.
Polishing. Even after almost 10 years of making professional jewellery, the contrast of dirty hands and shiny metal still amazes me! It feels great looking like a pig but holding this precious little something in one’s hands!
I hope you like the ‘Dating Medal’ and the journey of its making. If you should be in Valencia around the 5th of May, please feel free to join the exhibition opening. The show will be on until the end of June.
If you can find a chance to go, please take a picture of the piece and send it to me! I would love to see it on display! Enjoy the show!