The Expanded Jewellery. Exhibition of Enric Majoral in Barcelona

Exhibition  /  22 Sep 2022  -  27 Nov 2022
Published: 21.09.2022

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The exhibition, The Expanded Jewellery is organized by the Museu del Disseny with the collaboration of A-FAD in the Design HUB of Barcelona. The exposition is centered in the singular creations of Enric Majoral jeweler, unveiling his creative journey. The selection focuses on unique, specific pieces, which have been part of his quest for both technical and expressive experimentation and which, often, have been the origin of Majoral’s collections.

Artist list

Enric Majoral
A tour through the creative universe of Majoral

The exhibition brings together 159 pieces by Enric Majoral distributed in a total of eight areas that explain the vital evolution of this singular character and his creative stages. Far from chronological order, the exhibition emphasizes the fundamental elements that help to understand his unique language and style.

The first area, Formentera house-workshop, is dedicated to getting to know the vital and creative origins of a self-made artist in the cradle of Mediterranean culture and the link with the territory. You can see jewels made of gold and silver, materials of great symbolic and spiritual meaning. The second area is The talisman jewel, a section where the magic of the amulet and the austerity of the archaic jewel resonate. The works we find there stand out for their austere and monumental beauty and reflect the ancestral references, the Greek, Phoenician and African signs that influence Majoral. The third area is entitled Poetics of space and brings together a series of pieces of great poetic and symbolic value which look towards the interiority of the jeweller and his perceptive experience. In this section, the jewels from the Capelletes collection (1996) stand out, inspired by primitive architecture such as the cistern of Formentera and the rural chapels of the first Catalan Romanesque, as well as biological spaces of nature where life germinates. The Cuconets pendants (1998 - 1999), inspired by the small stony concavities that collect dew water, are also some of the jewels that can be seen in this area.

Already in the fourth area, we find the Jewellery container , where the pieces are the receptacle that houses materials, shells, plants and particles from the marine and rocky landscape of the island of Formentera. A good example is the Gabietes (1998), made in gold or silver and containing natural elements such as sea snails and Posidonia. The fifth area is dedicated to the Organic Jewel and collects some of the pieces that reflect the close vital and creative link of Majoral with the island. This is the case of the Posidonia jewels, which, made in gold and silver, are an example of how the attraction for the organic universe and, in particular, the world of water, inspires many of Majoral's creations. As for the materials used, in this section, you can see pieces that incorporate wool, thread and colour.

The sixth area is the so-called Sand jewels. These jewels arise from the innovative use of polyurethane, a material that is activated by the application of pigment that, in dialogue with the oxidation processes specific to silver, unleashes a range of colours and unthinkable metamorphoses of the material. It is a series of pendants, brooches, bracelets and rings that show how Majoral reached the maturity of the craft by abandoning all methods and surrendering to the beauty of improvisation and imperfection.

The seventh area explores the relationship between The hand, the tool, the matter. Majoral indulges in an intuitive dialogue to create jewels that capture matter in motion. The result is jewellery with a wide range of highly expressive and vital finishes and textures. In addition, through the gesture and the direct attack of the artist, a space that is always different is generated in the matter. An example is the Cuconets necklace (2006) which, made with silver and paint, also incorporates the colour that illuminates its physical quality.

Naming the jewel is the last area of ​​the exhibition and refers to the process in which the names that identify the Majoral collections emerge. Based on a shared procedure, names are proposed that arise from observing the pieces, feeling their structures and materials, taking their temperature and perceiving their colours and textures, as well as fixing their behaviour on the body. In this section, we find works such as the Vida (2013), Aire (2013), Núvols (2016) and Baladre (2012) necklaces.  

Closes the exhibition L'Aiguador (2019 -2020), a weightless sculpture that descends from the ceiling like a starry planet. This monumental gem is presented as a drawing in space made of painted silver structures that multiply from an open centre. The Aquiador conveys the coexistence of form and light; movement and space; the bloom of metal and colour. 
Enric Majoral with his installation

About the artist
Born in Sabadell in 1949, Enric Majoral started working as a jeweller in 1974 as a self-taught man. The jeweller's close relationship with the island of Formentera has marked his creations, which he himself defines as 'the essence of Formentera'. Majoral is a jeweller who has made himself learn from everything around him. From traditional crafts and archaic forms to the universe of art and design and using the materials of jewellery par excellence, gold and silver, full of symbolism and multiple meanings. Member of the FAD, he was president of Orfebres FAD from 1992 to 1997. In 2007 he received the National Craft Award from the Ministry of Industry.

Enrique Mayoral, La joia expandida presents a jeweller's life that has ended up absorbing the four members of the Majoral - Ballester family. The exhibition unfolds as a vital and creative itinerary that, over the course of 45 years, brings together the jeweller's activity and habitat - the Formentera of the 70s - which at the time was a still living paradigm of the ancestral suburban culture. Through the different areas of the exhibition, it is made clear in what way the school of Majoral was nature and how his learning and daily work emerged from the careful observation and contemplation of the world around him. At the same time, the workshop is the epicentre of this deployment. The place where the creator connects the language of jewellery with the universe of matter and its capacity for metamorphosis, where he explores the limits of jewellery from all points of view and where the craftsman becomes a jeweller.

Seen from today, we can say that Enric Majoral is a complex figure and ahead of his time with a unique language that is a source of inspiration for new generations of jewellers. His creations, far from following established models, have expanded the universe of jewellery by opening a new narrative for the history of jewellery in the 21st century, while expanding and diversifying the audience of jewellery today.

Parallel Activities to the exhibition
  • Round table: Enric Majoral. The Expanded Jewel. September 29, 2022, 18:30h, Design Museum
  • Enjoia't exhibition: selected pieces from the Contemporary Jewelery Awards.
Enric Majoral. Pendant: Blue, 2021. Gold, silver and acrylic paint.. From series: Joies Blaves. Enric Majoral
Pendant: Blue, 2021
Gold, silver and acrylic paint.
From series: Joies Blaves
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Enric Majoral. Necklace: Mohair, 2004. Gold and mohair wool.. From series: Mohair. Enric Majoral
Necklace: Mohair, 2004
Gold and mohair wool.
From series: Mohair
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Enric Majoral. Bracelet: Sorra. Gold. Enric Majoral
Bracelet: Sorra
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Enric Majoral. Piece: Capelletes. Gold, silver, paint. 2 to 7 cm. Enric Majoral
Piece: Capelletes
Gold, silver, paint
2 to 7 cm
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