- Julia Wild
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Intersection - a meeting point between two or more lines, a geometrical term, a unifying keystone and a refection.
Coming from a family of goldsmiths, Stefania Lucchetta grew up in an environment in which tools and materials were worked which had already existed in a similar form and with a similar purpose for centuries. She was born into a tradition of craftsmanship which goes back to the primal human desire to decorate oneself. And so in her parents’ workshop traditional knowledge about the conquest of material crossed paths with the curious child who came to know not only the hand, but also the tool as the facilitator of something not yet existing.
These two lines remained close, almost touched each other, without crossing one another. Sometimes they went in different directions, repelled each other. Thus as a child Lucchetta discovered pen and brush for herself and followed this path from her parents’ workshop, in which the creative act of form-finding was ever-present. But it gave her a new aim; the search for her own, free expression, the possibility to give her fantasy and creativity space.
Drawing, painting as well as the study of art still pervade Lucchetta’s creative process today. It is a broad path, rooted deep in tradition and going beyond her own personal self. A line that was however crossed by something new, that seemed diametrically opposed to the concept of art of the time as well as to the jewellery world: working with new materials and technologies that were increasingly used in industrial design around the turn of the millennium.
Stefania Luchetta. Brooch: Vibrations 16, 2017. Material: anodised titanium. Size: 5.1 x 3.1 x 0.38 cm. Photo by: Fabio Zonta. From series: Vibrations.
Lucchetta’s work was pioneering in that her curiosity brought her, in the face of all obstacles, to pick up and connect these three threads. For the focus of her experiments with the nascent technologies of laser etching and stereolithography machinery was not the search for a replacement for the time-consuming manual work involved in jewellery, which simply maps and efficiently copies the manual process, but was determined by the desire to exploit new possibilities in design. Lucchetta was fascinated by the potential of these new technologies to create something which until then, by hand and using traditional goldsmithing techniques, had been inconceivable and thus also unachievable. For her, 3D technology meant an expansion of possibilities, where traditional craft made her feel constrained.
Layer by layer, like the process of prototyping, Lucchetta developed her pieces of jewellery. It is a very time-consuming and protracted process; first she hand-sketches an idea, then she tries it out, experimenting again and again with shapes, samples, structures on the computer until in the last step the abstraction of an idea in resin, wax or the metals stellite or titanium materialise, layer by layer.
Stefania Lucchetta. Ring: Galaxy 205, 2018. Material:stellite. Size: 5.85 x 6.15 x 3.64 cm. Photo by: Fabio Zonta. From series: Galaxy.
Not only the technology but also the materials used open up new paths in jewellery design for Lucchetta. Stellite and titanium for example, are characterised by their low weight and particular durability. Only this makes the delicate lines in metal possible, which make Lucchetta’s work unique in jewellery. At the same time, these material properties allow a volume in the design which the weight and malleability of the classic jewellery metals silver and gold would not permit.
By allowing lines and paths to intersect, Lucchetta creates something new, unprecedented. At the intersection of these lines which meet again and again in prolonged processes, lies the beginning of something new. Each of her pieces of jewellery reflects this moment of creation, is simultaneously what has become, and what remains.
Stefania Lucchetta. Necklace: Untitled, 2018. Material: anodised titanium. Photo by: Fabio Zonta.
Intersection, a geometrical term.
Design is giving shape to an idea. Beginning with simple geometrical shapes Lucchetta searches, through her creative process, for pure expression, the essence. In using the capability of 3D software to try out countless variations of a shape idea, she transforms the shapeless, chaos into something tangible, defined.
The replication of the seemingly single holds the potential for an infinite structure, which despite or even because of its complexity, radiates peace and harmony. Lucchetta’s path to her creative roots runs from the first hand-drawn sketches of an idea on paper, through the lengthy search for traces in the labyrinth of geometrical forms to the point at which hand and mind, tradition and innovation, art and design intersect.
Lucchetta is fascinated by the precision and the imaginary of geometry: lines, interfaces and curves which recur, repeat themselves, align themselves, create a rhythm, never end. For her, immersion in the world of geometry carries access to something incredible and nameless which can be experienced in abstraction, in the recognition of harmony within the structure. Her pieces of jewellery reflect her search for beauty in perfection: the rhythm that continues but changes, whose irregularity imperceptibly flows into regularity; symmetry which is interrupted and yet follows superordinate rules. It is the search for the poetry of a perfection which is born from chaos, from turmoil. Drawn by their invisible inscriptions, its beauty unfolds in the harmony of a greater order.
Stefania Lucchetta. Earring: Galaxy 211, 2018. Material: anodised titanium, gold. Photo by: Fabio Zonta. From series: Galaxy.
Intersection, a unifying keystone.
Lucchetta’s pieces of jewellery create spaces. Spaces whose structure radiates immense peace, harmony, like the atmosphere in old churches. They are wearable constructions of quiet places. Self-contained but fitted with doors that open the way to an own dreamland.
On the one hand, these spaces are created to preserve an inner structure and to delimit it from the outside, on the other the observer of the rhythmical, asymmetrical metal designs – immutable in substance but eternally transforming in the imagination –, is able to think beyond the edges of the objects of jewellery. Thus these small, portable spaces expand to become something imaginarily cloaking the wearer.
Jewellery often serves as protection, to defend or separate. This is not the case with Lucchetta’s pieces. Because her jewellery creates spaces which are open in their material structure, whose borders are fluid. Borders which consist of a texture based on the creative idea of jewellery making and which only exist in the imagination of the beholder.
Lucchetta’s pieces resemble keystones, in that visible, tangible as well as imaginary arcs intersect. They follow the creative idea of gothic architecture; the desire to combine the material with the immaterial, to create lightness from resilience. The urge to create an eternally constant line, continuing into infinity, pierced only by light.
Stefania Lucchetta. Necklace: Cattedrali 1, 2018. Material: anodised titanium. Photo by: Fabio Zonta.
Intersection, a reflection.
The interplay between material and immaterial is also found in Lucchetta’s handling of light. Captured light makes her pieces of jewellery look big and at the same time gives them a visual lightness. Light accentuates the metallic lines, multiplies the existing structure in the shadows cast.
Polished to a high shine, the pieces give the impression that light is not reflected by them, but sucked into them, like light falling on a deep, still body of water. Whereas if traces of the metal printing are still discernible on the surface, then light enhances the impact of the material and accentuates the linear construction of the work.
The iridescent effect of the open, metallic surface structure is reminiscent of old silk fabric, the colour of which seems to change slightly depending on the light, the wearer’s movement or the position of the beholder; it begins to shimmer, and the reflection creates a shining impression.
Even when, due to the reduced, geometrical stylistic idiom, Lucchetta abstracts from her person in the design of her pieces of jewellery, there is still something very personal to be found in the way in which light flows into her work as another material. So her pieces are not likenesses of something concrete from her environment, but reproductions of the effect of light which flashes as a trail of remembrance: the light falling in a church, the submerged light of a deep lake, the shimmer of old Venetian silk, the play of shadows on an old wall, the iridescent light of the sea which is captured within her youngest pieces of jewellery.
Lucchetta’s pieces are thus wearable interfaces of life trails, the immaterial materialised.
Stefania Lucchetta. Necklace: Galaxy 03, 2018. Material: anodised titanium. Photo by: Fabio Zonta. From series: Galaxy.
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