Jewelry self-portraits of Romanian Jewelry Week 2.0 designers. Part I

Published: 16.09.2021
Alexandra Bujenita
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Romanian Jewelry Week 2.0 is celebrating contemporary jewelry between September 30th and October 3rd, 2021 with exhibitions, conferences, tours, and jewelry fair featuring over 200 Romanian designers and international exhibitors.

The Central Exhibition is taking place on September 30 at Arcub Gabroveni, Bucharest, and there will be presented creations of the over 200 contemporary jewelry designers from all over the world.
The designers participating in Romanian Jewelry Week shared with us what is the jewelry that can be called self-portrait and what is its significance.

Alice Stoicescu, Romania.
The "Human Kintsugi" collection, which will be exhibited this year at ROJW, is, perhaps, my most personal creation so far. It expresses my feelings, but I think we can all find ourselves within its story. Kintsugi is the Japanese art of repairing broken pottery by mending the areas of breakage with lacquer dusted or mixed with powdered gold, silver, or platinum. Kintsugi means the acceptance of change and fate as aspects of human life. The gold foil imitates the cracks in the porcelain and transposes them into the hardships that break us throughout our lives, which represent, nonetheless, the uniqueness of the individual.  In a world that worships perfection, the art of Kintsugi holds special wisdom, which could be equally applied to porcelain as well as to human life.  Love and care for broken ceramics should also extend upon ourselves, giving us the confidence to respect what is broken and scarred, vulnerable and imperfect. The secret of the collection lies in the small, perfectly round white pearl placed on the inside of the pieces, representing purity and beauty, yearning for the kindness of the soul in spite of its wounds. 

Ani Flys, Spain.
The Breaking Free collection was one of the first to express what I needed to say, breaking free from my past (more commercial and decorated jewelry), and being truly honest with the medium I use. But my jewelry, as my persona, are in continuous evolution, so I would also have to include pieces from the Molecular collections as well: a constant transformation of the eggshell to other forms: with portholes to interiors or to what lies beyond.

Arielle Brackett, USA.
Five years ago, I created a self-portrait sculpture in the form of a nest and cup. The nest was woven together with twigs, moss and dried air plants. I sealed it with a lacquer and electroformed (copper plated) it. The cup is raised from a flat sheet of copper and has a turquoise patina.  Conceptually Self-Portrait, is about being a late bloomer and the youngest child. It is about the growing pains surrounding leaving the “nest.” It was a painful process for us all, but a necessary one. The oversized “egg” has become too big for the “nest.”  I, too, have become too old for my parent’s nest. Although there is still a bit of the nest that holds the egg, there is no longer the complete protection or nurturing that there once was. It becomes a piece about growing pains, reflection and growth.

Bego Fuente, Spain.
It’s difficult to say. I guess all my pieces talk about me one way or another. Creating is a therapy as well as a passion. Your thoughts, feelings, ideas, moods are represented in the pieces, sometimes consciously and sometimes thoughtlessly. Usually, my pieces are made of gestures that come straight from the guts, I just follow my instincts.

Fabiana Fusco, Italy.
Maybe Hide and Seek cuff. A bracelet that I made in 2003 in a period when I was looking to find new inspiration to work on after a period of a lot of life changes.

Gena Tudor, Romania.
My self potrait is called Ruby's Dark Side and tells the story of a young man who is forced to leave home to work on the Danube-Black Sea Canal. After escaping from the harsh conditions in which he was kept, he is hosted by a family for a year, a family that, in exchange for the work done in the household, rewards him with a ruby.
70 years later, I created the jewel that represents the connection between the past and the future, between despair and hope, which tells the story of a simple man who became my grandfather.

Hairuo Ding, China.
I have been troubled by mental problems for a long time, maybe because I am an extremely cheerful person in the eyes of all people, I deeply feel people neglecting and misunderstanding mental illness, that made me start to study mental illness and tried to express this invisible pain and helplessness of people with mental illness in an artistic way, I hope people will be more imaginative about the suffering of others and encourage those people who have a mental illness to face up to it, you are not alone.

Khajornsak Nakpan, Thailand.
The contemporary jewelry seen in this collection is a result of the innovative synthetization of melanin from soil to produce a substitute biomaterial. It highlights the uniqueness of soil which has a similar colour to human skin (and can be demonstrated by a scientific method.) It reflects the concepts of “self-esteem,” and of respecting others and nature. Everything in this world is interdependent. It is important that we are able to live together with balance and in harmony. The innovative material is made from soil which is from nature. It is biodegradable and becomes a part of nature again. In this piece of work, I use the amplituhedron shape to represent the concepts. Amplituhedron is a mathematically calculated geometric shape introduced by Nima Arkani-Hamed and Jaroslav Trnka. It is the innovation of 2013. The shape explains relationships between particles, the smallest unit of a living mechanism. I simplify it to convey the message.

Nina Bashirian, Iran.
This piece is more close to an image I have of myself. It has a kind of fear when I wear the piece in opposition to its flow, simplicity, and elegance. I personally love dynamic design in jewelry and I believe we are past the era of designing passive objects. The design of this ring illustrates the nipples in the same way women recognize them- flat and fixed while fantasizing about their sensuality.

Silvia Cruceru, Romania.
It's just a choice of the moment: any of my pieces talk about roads, paths, paths. It evokes mine - some straight, some serpentine; bright, but also clear-dark melancholy; crossed (sometimes to the end, sometimes only halfway), but also untrodden;… often left only (in) the nostalgic trace of some hidden desires…

>> Read more about Romanian Jewelry Week Designers here.


About the author

Alexandra Bujenita
is the PR manager of Romanian Jewelry Week team, Art developer of Creative team of Imbold Cultural Foundation, Founder Delalu, PR account at Hello Menthol and Acuarela - Bucharest.