Every piece created by us is a unique piece. Interview with Schneider-Rappel Goldschiede by Klimt02

Published: 17.06.2021
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Schneider-Rappel Goldschmiede. Brooch: Be Water, 2020. 925 silver. 5 x 2.5 x 1 cm. Designed by Lea Schneider.
. Unique piece. Schneider-Rappel Goldschmiede
Brooch: Be Water, 2020
925 silver
5 x 2.5 x 1 cm
Designed by Lea Schneider.
Unique piece
© By the author. Read Copyright.

We see it as part of our mission to build awareness for this conscious way of living involving arts and crafts as a basic human need and desire, and it's a tremendous effect on our state of mind and well-being.
Tell us about your background. What were your first influences to be creative and become an artist and what has drawn you to contemporary jewelry?
As we are a family business that is currently creating jewelry in the 5th generation we are naturally drawn to this genre. It's a legacy and passion passed on from our ancestors since 1875. From the sacral works that have been done back in the days conquering the world to the modern minimalist jewelry and objects today, a beautiful tale about a wild transformation of a traditional yet experimental gold- and silversmithing atelier can be told. 
Arno Schneider has a background in sculpting, passing his diploma at the academy of applied arts in Munich. This approach can clearly be seen in his object-like jewelry art and makes it an exciting melange of these intertwined disciplines. Lea Schneider, Arno's daughter, joined the family atelier a few years ago and is trained as a gold- and silversmith coming from another background related to media design and cultural studies. Lea uses her fields of interest to open up conversations through the medium of jewelry, using the wearable pieces of art as a way of expressing thoughts and reflecting on life and culture while creating, and furthermore actively invite the wearer to participate in this discussion. The communication aspect takes place via the jewelry piece itself but also through supporting media like foto, film, graphics, and illustrations, mixing these components serves to get a deeper understanding of the story behind the piece and the underlying meaning and purpose of the art and creation process.

How important is networking for you in your professional practice and what are your preferred tools for this?
Sharing a deep connection to our customer base is very important to us, we share the passion for the craft and topics of discussion. Friendships have evolved and we are always keen on growing our community. New connections, new input, and exchange are firing up our inspiration and desire to keep on pushing boundaries and move forward. 
In short, people are everything to us, the fundament we are building upon for 145 years. Preferably, we meet in person and enjoy connecting in real life but we also do enjoy when this is happening in the online spheres. In both ways, we enrich our circle of customers and other artists to cooperate and very much appreciate the variety of opportunities to do so.

Brooch: Vessel of Sunshine by Schneider-Rappel Goldschmiede, 2018. 18 k gold, golden Beryl, 10 x 0.8 x 0.8 cm. Designed by Arno Schneider. Unique piece.

What are your general thoughts on the contemporary jewelry world, (education, market, development...), where do you see chances, and where are dead ends?
We see a big chance in slowing down the industry in terms of less is more regarding the quantity of output and finding our way back to handcrafted quality rather than mass production and consumption. Furthermore, we see it as part of our mission to build awareness for this conscious way of living involving arts and crafts as a basic human need and desire, and it's a tremendous effect on our state of mind and well-being. The environment we live in and co-create, and the objects that are part of it, influence our happiness and more or less subconsciously shape our reality, the way we perceive the world and feel about ourselves. Looking at our experience and the feedback from our network we can clearly state that the fascination for handcrafting is constantly growing and it seems as the world is spinning faster and faster, the desire to slow down is on the advance more than ever.
The sharing of knowledge and wisdom takes place not only in schools and studios but also on various online platforms, a beautiful trend of making this specific genre more accessible, promoting the beauty of crafting, and encouraging others to give it a try. Simultaneously a bigger customer base is growing with a better understanding of the products and services they consume, driving change in their behavior and spreading the word for creating a more conscious society and better future with a sustainable approach.

Thinking about your career, what role do technology and the digital play in your artistic development & communication?
We were pretty late following the trend of digitalization and keeping our business “old-school” not only in the production way but also regarding sales and communication. Step by step we enter the online sphere and without stressing about gaining thousands of followers instantly and driving sales up, we rather enjoy being able to share more of who we are and what we do and of course connecting to a broader audience. In our atelier, we do the sketching and the production by hand, nevertheless, we are working on various projects where 3D designing is involved, stay tuned for this to pop up a little later this year.
As mentioned before we enjoy connecting and collaborating, which are big opportunities opening up through modern technology. Also, it plays a big role in capturing the story of the pieces we create and of us as the person who puts his heart into the art. 
We thrive to draw a bigger picture through the use of technology as a supplementary yet basic tool to enrich what we do and the way we express ourselves. Playing around with photos, film, graphics, and illustrations to fully use our creative potential.

How has your work changed over the past few years and what are you excited about these days?
Nearly every piece created by us is a unique piece, so there is always change happening. We experiment with different forms and shapes, materials and textures, crafting techniques, and workflows.
Especially for Arno Schneider the challenge to reduce the design outcome to the minimum in its aesthetic regarding minimalism to celebrate the beauty of simplicity and clarity is an everlasting process and brought to the surface with every piece he creates. He emphasizes the material to speak for itself, to underline its qualities and characteristics by not adding too much noise through opulent or ornamental designs but rather clean and edgy shapes that are juxtaposed to the organic, natural shapes of gemstones and the precious metals used.
Lea Schneider is experimenting with fluid, organic, and abstract shapes, putting specific intentions into every piece of art, spreading a feeling of effortless ease and some playfulness while transferring messages through the medium of jewelry. Both aim to find themselves in the crafts and express their inner world through the creation of conversation pieces. As we grow each day, the input we get naturally influences our output. The inner and outer dialogue goes on forever. Adapting to circumstances around us, we find ourselves confronted with diverse perspectives and translate our response into metal and other media.