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Creating Jewellery for Me is a Way to 'Meditate'. Interview with Katerina Glinou by Klimt02

Interview
Published: 14.05.2021
Katerina Glinou Katerina Glinou
Author:
Klimt02
Edited by:
Klimt02
Edited at:
Barcelona
Edited on:
2021
Katerina Glinou. Vase: In Spiral 01, 2021. Felt, thread, glue, elastic band.. 40 x 30 cm. Photo by: Katerina Glinou. From series: In Spiral. Katerina Glinou
Vase: In Spiral 01, 2021
Felt, thread, glue, elastic band.
40 x 30 cm
Photo by: Katerina Glinou
From series: In Spiral
© By the author. Read Klimt02.net Copyright.

Intro
We -as artists and makers- have to get closer to people by explaining or talking about our work. Contemporary jewellery should be for everybody and not just for an elite of art specialists. [...] we have to focus on children. Through this relationship, we can achieve a lot and the teaching process will be helpful not only for the little ones but also for artists.
Tell us about your background. What were your first influences to be creative and become an artist and what has drawn you to contemporary jewellery?
I was raised in an artistic environment. Both my parents loved all kinds of art and this was part of everyday life. I started drawing when I was very little and this hobby became a way of expressing myself. From my young years, I developed skills in making small decorative objects and jewellery. When it was time to decide about my education I chose Architecture without a second thought. This way I could combine my love for art and the construction of objects (and spaces) on every scale. As an architecture student and as an architect I always designed and created objects. It was part of the learning and professional practice. But in architecture, only a few works can actually become real objects or buildings. The procedure is long and requires a client with understanding and a lot of people to make the project alive. Jewellery making has always been the easiest way to give shape to my designs without depending on others. 
I was drawn to contemporary jewellery because I enjoyed the freedom of creating jewellery without aesthetic or functional limitations. For me, it's a way to "meditate" on my bench. 
In the Greek language when we refer to "contemporary" jewellery we actually call it "visual" jewellery (eikastiko) while "contemporary" has the meaning of something modern and current. That's why a lot of Greek jewellers refer to their "modern" pieces as "contemporary" and this is confusing. I was confused too about 10 years ago when I started making bolder and more artistic pieces. I can't say that these were "contemporary" but surely they were the beginning of my journey.


How important is networking for you in your professional practice and what are your preferred tools for this?
Networking is very important for every creative person. It is the best way to learn new things and support each other. Nowadays with the large use of the internet, we have easy access to all kinds of information about our work and we can communicate while improving our knowledge and skills. But too much information sometimes can lead to overload and become exhausting. Sometimes I miss the old times when we could see a selection of art just in shows and galleries and read about it in books. This slow procedure helped me to deepen into information and was less stressful. If I had to choose I'd say that my preferred tools are small art shows and seminars or talks. Maybe I am a little tired by the isolation caused during the pandemic and actually missing getting closer to real people...


What are your general thoughts on the contemporary jewellery world, (education, market, development...), where do you see chances and where are dead ends?
Contemporary jewellery is a new thing for Greek artists although there are some very talented and recognized Greek jewellers who I admire and follow. It is a field with great potentials and we have so many examples from all around the world that prove its value and significance. In Greece, there is still a lot to be done. Unfortunately, the majority of people don't really appreciate any kind of contemporary art and it's a disappointment for a country with such a glorious cultural history. It's important to educate people if we want them to participate in the world of art and contemporary jewellery. I think that people worldwide need to learn more about it because contemporary jewellery usually looks "peculiar" and we -as artists and makers- have to get closer to people by explaining or talking about our work. Contemporary jewellery should be for everybody and not just for an elite of art specialists. I don't see any dead ends but a bright future and I strongly believe that we have to focus on children. Through this relationship, we can achieve a lot and the teaching process will be helpful not only for the little ones but also for artists.     


Thinking about your career, what role do technology and the digital play in your artistic development & communication?
At the moment I use technology only for communication. Websites and social media give me the opportunity to show my work and learn a lot of things. I don't use digital technology for production because I prefer traditional methods which include handwork from point zero until the final product. It is time-consuming but also a challenge and it helps me to overcome my insecurity with tools and materials. 


How has your work changed over the past few years and what are you excited about these days?
Of course, it has. As a matter of fact, it could not be the same because I am a person that gets bored easily so I could never do the same thing again and again. I started with beads and then moved to fabrics while experimenting with metals. The last few years I took some courses on silversmith techniques and it was fascinating. Since December 2020 I came up with the idea of making a series of jewellery with dry plants and metals (Soul Garden Collection) and the past few weeks I started making papier mache pieces to combine with silver. 

 
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