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Sensual Appearance and Technical Perfectionism are Equally Important. Interview with Maija Vitola by Klimt02

Interview
Published: 28.09.2020
Maija Vitola Maija Vitola
Author:
Klimt02
Edited by:
Klimt02
Edited at:
Barcelona
Edited on:
2020
Maija Vitola. Brooch: Enlightening Everything, 2020. Ebony wood, gold plated sterling silver, black pearl.. 8.8 x 9 x 2 cm. From series: Enlightening Everything. Maija Vitola
Brooch: Enlightening Everything, 2020
Ebony wood, gold plated sterling silver, black pearl.
8.8 x 9 x 2 cm
From series: Enlightening Everything
© By the author. Read Klimt02.net Copyright.

Intro
I think that there can never be a replacement for the coordination between the human brain and our hands. When I'm carving material by hand it feels like the material tells its own story, allowing me to create works that are unique and sculptural representations of my world - jewellery becomes a link between the perception of the world itself and the viewer. I think that both the sensual appearance and technical perfectionism are equally important.
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?
Growing up in a family of artists, I have been interested in art since early childhood. For a long time, I was infatuated with graphic arts due to its delicacy and technical possibilities. My interest in jewellery design developed only in recent years. For a period of time I soul-searched and expressed myself in different fields. I studied iconography and worked in a sculpture workshop. The Bachelor and Master's Degree I acquired by the Latvian Academy of Arts in the Metal Design Department where is I got enthralled with metal and realized the three-dimensional enchantment of it. Jewellery making and working with metal enraptures me because of the possibilities this material provides as well as the incredible plasticity of forms. The impulse to express myself and to try something new has grown stronger over the years, and I applied it in my works, growing into art jewellery as small sculptures. Nevertheless, in my jewellery I am trying to keep the fineness that is distinctive to graphic arts techniques.


How important is networking for you in your professional practice and what are your preferred tools for this?
On one hand, I’m sure that social media events are important for visibility and the exchange of experiences because it gives us the possibility to get in front of all kind of audiences that can be interested in our works. However, on another hand, I think seeing so much artwork online damages the perception and value of an artwork.


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 very small field of art. Unfortunately, sometimes it is hard to sell work and many jewellers do need side jobs to make a living. I continue working in this field because of the creative process - creating new works is my inner need, without which I cannot imagine my daily life. It is a set of feelings and thoughts that make up my spiritual growth. In a way, it allows me to distance myself from all kinds of bad news.


Thinking about your career, what role do technology and digital play in your artistic development & communication?
Creating jewellery for me is a beautiful, creative, and time-consuming process. Nowadays, more and more jewellery artists “print” their jewellery. This certainly does not mean that the work would be less valuable, but that process is just not to my taste. I prefer not to use new technologies in creating my works because, for me, the connection between my mind and hands is very important - sometimes it feels like our hands think for themselves and I think that there can never be a replacement for the coordination between the human brain and our hands. When I'm carving material by hand it feels like the material tells its own story, allowing me to create works that are unique and sculptural representations of my world - jewellery becomes a link between the perception of the world itself and the viewer. I think that both the sensual appearance and technical perfectionism are equally important.


How has your work changed over the past few years and what are you excited about these days?
I love working with natural material, such as bone, wood, horn, and I have widened my experience in this field for the past few years. I am excited about many things and I am sorrowful about many things too. Mostly, the inspiration for my work I find in human lives, in the experience gained in it, in the fundamental values. There have always been many symbols in my works - this is the way how I express my inner feelings. I would like to think that I put a small piece of my soul in every one of my pieces. Because of Covid-19, things seem to be changing now and bringing significant changes to the future. However, I think that this is, in a sense, a time of re-evaluation, when each of us can ask ourselves what is really important to us.
 
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