Xavier Monclùs: Narrative Jewellery. An introduction

Article  /  Artists   Making   BehindTheScenes
Published: 13.06.2014
Xavier Monclùs: Narrative Jewellery. An introduction.
Le Arti Orafe
Edited by:
Le Arti Orafe
Edited at:
Narrative Jewellery: a workshop by Xavier Monclùs
Le Arti Orafe
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The purpose of this seminar was to realize jewellery starting by images found by the participants. Students wishing to participate in the workshop first compiled a small collection of images that can be obtained from your everyday environment.
Xavier Monclùs,  “Narrative Jewellery: an introduction”.
28 - 30 April, 2014.

From the beginning of its activities, LAO considered of primary importance to offer its students the opportunity to meet with various artists, designers, goldsmiths, and learn about different approaches and points of view to the issue of creating jewellery.
This is one of the fundamental aspects of our teaching method, which is now common to most of the schools, but that was completely unknown in the 80s, and it was opened, promoted and disseminated thanks to LAO. The school must offers to students as possible diversified opportunities to discuss, comparate and debate, and to assess their capacity to compete with ever new tasks and objectives.

In these 29 years, numbers of creators from all over the world have been invited, for brief interventions in academic courses, or special seminars.

For the 2013-2014’s school year, the invited artists were Philip Sajet and Xavier Monclùs, each of which has been working for a week with the students of the second and third year of jewellery making classes.
During the two workshops, the artists have been presented –and the artists themselves had their own presentation/conference- in the Marino Marini Museum.

Introduction to the workshop.
The purpose of this seminar is to realize jewellery starting by images found by the participants. Students wishing to participate in the workshop must first compile a small collection of images that can be obtained from your everyday environment.
You can get these images from newspapers, magazines, paper wrappers, advertising, old book’s illustration, etc .... And of course by the great possibilities offered by Internet. Previously, you can manipulate the size and colour of these images, to adapt to their ideas.
Participants may also bring small objects, as toy store, plastics, wood or metal elements that serve to supplement compositions. We will then strengthen the collage and assemblage of our objects.
With this small arsenal of images and objects, students will address the design of the composition of a future jewel.
After a preliminary dialogue with the teacher, participant will begin the process of making jewel, assessing which is the most suitable technique for the work they decide to do. We will try to realize pieces with the better quality possible.
We stress upon “embatado” technique, which is the construction of hollow pieces, whether open or closed. So also will encourage participants to use small wood pieces that can fit into “embatado”, thus creating interesting textures.
We will encourage participants to enhance the expressive and cultural value by painting parts of the pieces.
The piece of jewellery to realize is completely free and can be a brooch, pendant, rings, etc .... and may also be an object.
Individual attention to each participant will be made by the teacher, and encouraging a dialogue about different concepts of art history and theory of the object as applied to the construction of the single pieces.
Ultimately, we want to promote creativity and conceptual reflection while students perform a piece of jewellery with the highest quality and possible technical solutions.

About Xavier Monclús work
How can memory be anything other than (pure) imagery? That is to say a repertoire of images that we have collected throughout our lives which, in turn, allow us to create new images perhaps according to our fancy or with a deep internal logic.
These workings of the memory, always bound up with our affections, serve either to defend us from, or to love this world. Through humility and paradox, Xavier Monclús’ work attempts to create a “small universe”
Characteristic to Monclús is his use of a narrative language which transcends jewellery’s habitual resources.Then there is his very personal comic and contradictory link between that which might or might not move. Quite apart from an implicit critical sense found explicitly in “Brutality” and “L’Afrique segrestée par l’Europe” we are able to make out two main interconnected themes within his work: the house (home, the domestic) and the family (maternity – “A pregnant coffeepot” and “Canvi de temps”).

Joia means both joy and jewel in Catalan. In his lyrical world of fables, Xavier makes this coincidence real.

Xavier Monclús - “Small Universe”.
By Àlex Mitrani,
Member of the International Association of Art Critics.

Student’s feedback: Sezen Tulgarer
We were ready with the toys, images and randomly found objects for his workshop at that day. Excited, curious and more importantly happy about turning back our childhood.

It was the description and the question we have faced at the end: "Jewellery to play with or toys to wear?" as he was describing his work in the conference on April 30, 2014 at Marino Marini Museum.

The aim was to awaken the participants of the technical reflections throughout the process of creating jewellery with the images and toys, making compositions. Each of us created our own collage with the pictures, toys, daily objects and wood by using metalsmith techniques.
As our search for the new metarials and to force the limits under the consept of contemporary jewellery world, he opened his critical, smart and funny way of looking generously and shared the precious experienses of many years.
At the end our description for his work is "an adult approach to the childhood!"

Sezen Tulgarer

Xavier’s Feedback about the school and students
In my opinion Le Arti Orafe is a prestigious school with considerable experience in the technical and artistic training of young goldsmiths from various countries around the world.

Endowed with excellent workshops, the school attaches great importance to contemporary design and technical training and claim the traditional craft of jewelry, enhancing all techniques related to it.

The school has a commendable policy of inviting and clever jewelers with international prestige, which extend and enrich the school program, offering students new insights, techniques and concepts of jewelry creation.

Even if the school’s program is demanding and professional, a friendly and familiar atmosphere is generated in which students feel comfortable and relaxed.

The group with which I worked has been characterized by its high technical level and its positive and cooperative attitude. Students well understood the approaches of the workshop and showed their willingness to learn. I think the students got new experiences in the creation and realization of tjewellery, and assimilated a new way of creating artistic jewelry.

Materials at the bench.
Materials at the bench

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Materials at the bench.
Materials at the bench

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Work in progress.
Work in progress

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Piece of a student.
Piece of a student

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Xavier Monclús discussing with a student.
Xavier Monclús discussing with a student

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Work in progess.
Work in progess

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Working on the piece.
Working on the piece

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Work by a student.
Work by a student

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Work by a student.
Work by a student

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