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Time in Us: The Communication Potential of Contemporary Jewellery by Jana Machatová and Peter Machata

Exhibition  /  07 Nov 2019  -  05 Jan 2020
Published: 28.10.2019
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© By the author. Read Klimt02.net Copyright.

Intro
This exhibition represents the creative output of Slovak artists who are gradually approaching middle age and belong with the so-called “Generation of Husák’s children”. The jewellery objects designed by Jana and Petr Machata are accompanied by photographs made by Petr Ančic. Each one of this trio of artists reflects their childhood lived against a prefab housing skyline. The selection of fifty pieces of jewellery that maps out two decades of the artists’ work documents the power of jewellery to carry a message.
For the viewers, each of the exhibited objects becomes an entrance ticket to universal time, in which they can recurrently experience the crucial stories of their lives - the search of oneself, maturation, love, relationship mishaps, periods of painful losses and new hopes. Abstract elements mingle with citations of images found in family albums and social-life magazines. The possibility of observing what is substantial is offered through the raster of a prefab building as well as folk art ornament. The depth of feelings and bonds between people are reflected in the body landscape of today’s individuals, as well as in fragments of the bodies of the Virgin and Christ in the Pietà composition.

Jana Machatová and Peter Machata are distinctive figures in the field of jewellery design, although they live and work close to one another. Objects created by one echo in the background of the artwork of the other, the contexts intermingle. The languages spoken by Jana and Peter are of relevance to the current international art scene. Even so, the purely personal as well as general human responses to the pillars of Euro-American culture in Jana and Peter’s work are related to Slovakia – a region in the heart of Europe and yet on its boundary.
 
Jana Machatová (b. 1972) constructs jewellery as a goldsmith’s object, as a system of spatial plans. All contribute to communication: The mounting of the whole and the frameworks of the individual scenes thematise the manner of thought, they function as peepholes of sorts, as invitations to returns. The full appreciation of artwork requires touching and manipulation, if not in reality, then at least in ideas. As cornerstones of her creations, Jana employs both found and intimately known images, which she freely approaches, quotes and updates through the emptiness defined by its surroundings. The depth of feeling and experience of the artist and the viewer are spanned by a temporal bridge between the past and the future. The family album pictures rendered as jewellery pieces evoke the promise of a course of life, dissecting what is substantial – a bond of love, harmony and care, with an absence of individual features, the interchangeability of the roles of the loving and the loved. A genuine person has both roles, and it is not to the detriment of genuineness that in Jana’s jewellery we see the person in a crowd, through the prism of the drab dullness of the prefab housing estates. Only where the artist sets to fight the evidence of the State machinery’s direct liquidation of man does she reach the limits of her medium. The intensity of the creative experience holds her at the furthermost boundary of the art object’s workability. Designating an object with images of the dead as jewellery may seem absurd: Does such a piece of jewellery have its potential wearer? Jewellery does not have to be material, but what if we are unable to allow its contact with the human body? And yet this extreme position attests to the power of jewellery to carry a message. Questions regarding aesthetics remain more in the background. Communication via a jewellery object can travel along other trajectories.
 
Peter Machata (b. 1971) listens to shaping forces, leading us sculpturally along contour lines and breaks, opening the core of the material. How is the space of artwork created? Thanks to the nature of the material? To stereometric form? Through the willpower of man? Is the shape defined by inner action, or through the impact of its surroundings? The concert of convex and concave elements, the pulsation of the large and small, make us feel that we are empowered to create, that we are free despite all mutual bonds. The sovereignty of the artist, who blends the structure of natural material with the raster of folk art ornament offers the viewer an opportunity to see what is substantial. Or is this simply a school model of this world? The innermost relationship and an invitation to compassion assume figural form in the Mother and Son jewellery collection, inspired by the Pietà. The clash, transitions and reflection of the fragmentary bodies of a despairing woman and a dead man present the truth that is naked, veiled and forcing its way to the surface. Love does not last without grief, both make us what we are. However, suffering is accompanied by repose, where the moment when all clicks into place is superimposed by yet another journey. On his journey, Peter now turns his attention to concrete people. The story about the search of balance and a modus vivendi is told through the landscape of the body, through the high relief of the flesh.
 
The jewellery created by Jana and Peter Machata can be regarded as a contribution to the endless discussion regarding scale and proportions, the reach of the senses and our ability to grasp the whole indicated in a detail. However, first and foremost, the artist duo blends the existing with the vanished whose echo each of them amplifies in their own way. Thanks to their artistic creativity, we can break free from the shackles of linear time. We discover that while we experience the same stories, we lose neither our uniqueness nor justification. The voice of each and every one of us counts!

 
/ Petra Matějovičová, Curator, Collection of Precious Metals and Miscellaneous Materials, UPM


Opening time: Tuesday 10 am- 8 pm, Wednesday-Sunday 10 am - 6 pm, Monday closed.
Entrance free.

Opening

6 November Wednesday 2019, at 6 pm. 
Peter Machata. Pendant: Relic, 2016. Silver, Corian.. Photo by: Peter Ančic. Peter Machata
Pendant: Relic, 2016
Silver, Corian.
Photo by: Peter Ančic
© By the author. Read Klimt02.net Copyright.
Peter Machata. Pendant: Relic, 2016. Silver, Corian.. Photo by: Peter Ančic. Peter Machata
Pendant: Relic, 2016
Silver, Corian.
Photo by: Peter Ančic
© By the author. Read Klimt02.net Copyright.
Jana Machatova. Necklace: At Home, 2016. Silver, paper, plastic.. Photo by: Peter Ančic. Jana Machatova
Necklace: At Home, 2016
Silver, paper, plastic.
Photo by: Peter Ančic
© By the author. Read Klimt02.net Copyright.
Jana Machatova. Brooch: 1945-1989, Borderline, 2014. Silver, paper, plastic.. Photo by: Peter Ančic. Jana Machatova
Brooch: 1945-1989, Borderline, 2014
Silver, paper, plastic.
Photo by: Peter Ančic
© By the author. Read Klimt02.net Copyright.
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