Sperk Stret. International Conference of Contemporary Jewellery

Meeting  /  Exhibiting  /  22 Sep 2016  -  23 Sep 2016
Published: 23.09.2016
Sperk Stret. International Conference of Contemporary Jewellery.
+421 902 615 785
Mária H. Nepšinská

© By the author. Read Copyright.

The interantional bienale of contemporary jewellery Šperk Stret  is held in Bratislava, Slovak Republic, every two years and it is organized together with our partners: Jewellers´ Association AURA, Slovakia and the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Bratislava (AFAD), Slovakia.
ŠperkStret is an active platform for discussions on the contemporary jewelry between professional artists – jewelers, collectors, theorists, curators and a broad public. Every edition of the conference is dedicated to a specific topic and presenters are carefully chosen, so they can interestingly comment on the respective theme in a range of individual opinions and thus create the most democratic image of the issue.


Marjan Unger
Complicity and Much More. /10:00 - 12:30, Thursday 22th September
It is not easy for a design critic and an art history teacher to admit that you are a collector. Is it the urge to possess that makes you buy pieces from jewellery artists that you admire? For more than 30 years, I have been teaching young jewellery designers at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy and the Sandberg Institute in Amsterdam. In my case, that was mental sparring, I have never had the abilities to make jewellery myself. So I could be surprised to see how my students had visualised the ideas we had been discussing. When they started to present their work, somebody had to be the first one to buy it, as encouragement and as a way of showing appreciation for their creativity. This complicity also worked for the jewellery artists that were around me in the Netherlands and for example in Munich, London or Tokyo.
The reasons why I have been collecting Dutch jewellery from the 20th century and donated 500 pieces to the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam are more complex. I will tell you much more about that when I am in Bratislava.

Réka Lörincz
Background / 10:00 - 12:30, Thursday 22th September
Contemporary jewellery and what is behind it.
How can we cope with our defects and problems?
How could dyslexia be turned into an advantage?
How do I suffer efficiently?
And why I like spinach…

Einat Leader
Not much room for the new /10:00 - 12:30, Thursday 22th September
The majority of jewellery and metalsmithing collections that exist in Israel are of a national – historic character. This is mainly due to three reasons; Firstly, archaeology in Israel is vivacious, in the field and in the academies. Secondly, many ‘folklore’ objects from previous centuries are collected, aiming to revive legacies and to base narratives in the region. The third reason is the lack of a coherent research body of modern and contemporary history in the discussed fields. At the same time, there are new generations with many interesting active creators, amongst them some with international renown. But, their works are rarely continuously collected, exhibited or researched and published locally. The lecture will show some visual examples and present thoughts on these matters, and the attempts to change this situation during the last couple of decades.

Naďa Kančevová
Collecting Curiosities as a Principle of Creation / 13:30 - 16:30, Thursday 22th September
In the contemporary visual culture the use of found objects (and information) is generally a popular area: from digital archives through stacks of materials collected on the shelves and in boxes, until entire rooms systematically or chaotically filled with all sorts of objects. The theme of the lecture is reflection on collecting / art collecting as one of the strategies in the field of visual arts. In relation to the conference, the attention is focused mostly on the creation of design / jewellery, which in the broader context could be integrated into the framework of what the German art critic and sociologist W. Grasskamp in the late 70s labeled as “art collecion” (art collector). In the background of a certain contemporary “turnover to curiosities” the aim of the lecture is to illustrate the analogies between “artistic” handling with the collection of objects and objects within the historical cabinets of curiosities, that were built similarly primarily on visual associations, imagination and personal involvement of their collector / creator.

Wim Vandekerckhove
Interview / 13:30 - 16:30, Thursday 22th September
„I have always been interested in the symbiosis between jewellery and the body. This co- existence has always been my motivation as a gallerist. I also believe in jewellers feeling free through the “true mind” of their client. Form and beauty are inferior to that. And as Andy Warhol said “A Jewel should not make the person beautiful, it should give him the opportunity to feel beautiful.”

Carla Castiajo
Hair: Fetish or Compulsive Collecting?  /10:00 - 12:00, Friday 23th September
Carla Castiajo has been collecting her own hair and the hair of others´ using it as a raw material to develop her work. It is an often ignored source material which can be gathered in unusual places and therefore can evoke the most diverse feelings, emotions. Jewellery made of hair retains the presence of the individual to whom it belonged, something of the personal quality in the absence of body. Jewellery evokes a memory of life and of having passed away – that person’s life. A fetish can be considered the embodiment, the replacement of something that is missing but is somehow connected to personal attachments. One could perhaps say that its meaning and purpose seems to be replacing something that once was but now does not exist.
In the lecture Carla Castiajo will approach the theme - Hair as one of the most favoured fetishes. Since hair can offer a physical component that can then lead to satisfaction due to the pleasure of touching, combing, caressing, or just the possibility of looking at it, simply cutting it off, saving and collecting it.

Lucia Gašparovičová
Time Deposit  / 10:00 - 12:00, Friday 23th September
Uggie (Harvey Keitel) in the movie Smoke talks about his collection of four thousand photos of the same location, the corner of the third and seventh street, that he always takes at eight o´clock in the morning in all weather, every day, every morning, the same place, at the same time.: “All are the same, but each is somehow different, you’ve got your bright mornings, your black morning, your summer light, your autumn light, your ordinary days, your weekends, your people in coats and hats, people in T-shirts and shorts, sometimes the same people, sometimes others, sometimes those others become the same, and the same disappear, the Earth revolves around the Sun, and every day a shaft of light falls on the Earth from a different angle.”
Collecting can preserve everyday life, give value to the worthless or let the uniqueness fade in the multiplicity, trigger emotions, dependency, passion, emotion, create an equal relationship in which the collector is dependent on collection and the collection on its collector.

Heidi and Karl Bollmann
The Jeopardy of Jewellery  / 13:00 - 16:00, Friday 23th September
The shared lecture of Heidi and Karl Bollmann will reflect jewellery in the sense of timeless moment of ecstasy, when you are sure that the object you are going to present is not a gift. The lecture will reveal the imperative to adorn the modern poker face and if all efforts are in win. The second half of the lecture will be devoted to the theme – How not lose the overview while organizing and curating an extensive collection devoted to author jewellery.

Peter Skubic
In the Past We Would Have Melted Our Jewellery. What Shall We Do With It Today? / 13:00 - 16:00, Friday 23th September
Love and friendship are the most important things in the world. Gerhard Kisser, a friend of mine, collected real old farmhouses, and is now the director of an open house-museum. Collecting jewellery is easy. You don`t need so much space and jewellery is light in weight. Collecting jewellery is harmless and good for the artists.
But what happenes with a collection when the collector gets older or dies?

Putting them on the market is not really good. The price falls. It is much better to donate or sell jewellery to a good museum. People can see the pieces and young artists can learn from. I know some collectors, including myself, who donated their collection to a museum. Helen Drutt is also one of them. She regularly gives pieces to Hermitage in St. Petersburg, to the Museum of Fine Art in Houston in Texas and to other museums.


Collection / Collecting
Thursday, 22 September

9:00 lecture theatre opens, arrival of guests (entrance5 €/10€), morning coffee
9:45 welcoming guests and topic introduction by Mária Hriešik Nepšinská

10:00 – 12:30 1st block of lectures:
Marjan Unger : Complicity, and much more.
Réka Lörincz: Background.
Einat Leader: Not much room for the new.

12:30-14:00 lunch break

14:00-16:30 2nd block of lectures:
Naďa Kančevová : Collecting "curiosities" as a principle of creation.
Win Vandekerckhove : interview with Pavol Prekop.

15minute break (coffee, refreshments)
Moderated discussion led by Katarína Defeo Fiúza Siposová

Collection / Collecting
Friday, 23 September
9:30 morning coffee, refreshments

10:00 – 12:00 3rd block of lectures
Carla Castiajo : Hair: Fetish or Compulsive Collecting?
Lucia Gašparovičová : Time Deposit.

12:00-13:30 lunch break

13:30-16:00 4 th block of lectures
Heidi a Karl Bollmann: Jeopardy of Jewellery.
Peter Skubic : In the Past We Would Have Melted Our Jewellery. What Shall We Do With It Today?

15 minute break (coffee, refreshments
Moderated discussion led by Mária Hriešik Nepšinská