Xavier Monclús

Published: 21.12.2020
Xavier Monclús Xavier Monclús


Xavier Monclús, Barcelona 1966, studied jewelry at the Massana School in Barcelona, Spain. From 1992 he presented his work in galleries and museums in Europe, United States, Canadá and Japan. From 2013 he lives and works in Maó, Menorca island, Spain. He combines his artistic activity with the educational task. He has given workshops and lectures in schools in Spain, France, England and Italy. He has also curated exhibitions in England and Spain. His work is represented in numerous catalogs and books of jewelry. His work can be seen in the Françoise van den Bosch Foundation, the Netherlands and the Museu del Disseny de Barcelona HUB of Barcelona, Spain.


New Work series:
My work has changed since 2010, and this is clearly visible if we observe my practice in the twenty years that preceded this shift. The narrative that so identified my pieces is gradually receding. Whilst retaining an element of figurative reference, my line of enquiry is now focused on a more direct geometric simplicity as well as a tendency towards minimalism. Narrative compositions have been replaced by forms that allude more to the inherent qualities of materials. I am now more interested in representing the materials that buildings are made of rather than narrating what happened inside them, as I used to do; to use geometric fragments that evoke the texture and colour of stone as well as of wood. Fragments speak of a whole; almost abstract in character, they can be in themselves a complete composition.
Animals have not disappeared from my work, not in the least. They are still there as messengers of our own selves, except now they are turned to stone. Petrified so that their memory stays with us forever.
I am now surrounded by the vernacular and the Bronze Age, Talayotic architecture of Menorca. Menorca is where I live now and where I should like to die: a small Mediterranean island, where one is always in contact with its ancestral core.
I love this island; I chose it, I represent it….

Animals series:
Animals feature constantly in my work. I feel a special sentimental attraction towards them. Through fable-like stories they can communicate complex human social behaviour. I often represent them as hybrid beings and assemble them alongside objects and architectural elements, so they acquire their own life and individual characters.

Architecture series:
Maybe I am a frustrated architect. If there is one distinguishing trait in my work it is the use of architecture as an important and recurrent feature. The house represents intimacy, where people are protected from the outside world, where they can live peacefully and in comfort, where they grow as persons. Old factories, a legacy from the Industrial Revolution, are also there, though they are now quite still, as if exhausted from their past manufacturing productivity.

Toys series:
Jewellery to play with or toys to wear?” once wrote the art historian Mónica Gaspar. This is a very accurate description of my work. I have always been attracted to toys, though clearly I am no longer a child.
I add wheels to my pieces so they can race, others have handles for winding them up and set them moving…ultimately my jewel-toys have become surreal miniatures that have a deeper and more complex meaning than appears at first glance.

I am a collector of old toys. It is a very strong passion of mine. Stronger, I feel, than making art jewellery…

Images series:
Pop art has always been a reference in my work. I have always been fascinated by the way this art movement has the capacity to turn mass-produced images into art. Dada and surrealist collages and their typical disregard for the context of images have always interested me as a way of expressing concepts and ideas in my work.
I have also made jewellery in which found images are central to the piece. Sometimes, these images are just another component in the piece. In others the image generates another technical form that I construct, enabling the change from two-dimensional to three-dimensional form.

Dinky Jewels Collection serie:
Rings, earrings, pendants, small brooches and pins make up this series of work.
I make them or find them in flea markets, and they become prototypes that end up as small jewels. These sweetly ironic, figurative pieces inhabit a small world that expands as I find or imagine a new object. These are recognisable by everyone…they are now used to adorn us, but they stem from our most absolute everyday environment.

CV      View / hide description

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Events      View / hide events

Exhibition  17 Nov 2020 - 08 Jan 2021  Two of a Kind.
Exhibition  30 Sep 2020 - 15 Dec 2020  METALLOphone: Museum.
Exhibition  26 Sep 2019 - 31 Oct 2019  Pilar Garrigosa Private Colletion.
Exhibition  14 Jun 2019 - 10 Sep 2019  Sunlight in Butterfly Wings.
Exhibition  02 May 2019 - 25 Jul 2019  A flor de pell 2019.
Award giving  30 Nov 2018 - 30 Nov 2018  JORGC Design Award 2018 awarded to Xavier Monclús.
Exhibition  19 Jul 2018 - 16 Sep 2018  Birds, Bees, Bears & Blossoms.
Exhibition  07 Sep 2017 - 30 Sep 2017  Holy Tools.
Exhibition  27 Jun 2017 - 22 Jul 2017  Twenty-Three. Contemporary Jewelry in Ibero-America.
Workshop  28 Apr 2017 - 30 Apr 2017  Assembling Ideas with Techniques by Xavier Monclús.
Workshop  12 Dec 2016 - 15 Dec 2016  Assembling ideas and techniques by Xavier Monclús.
Workshop  11 Nov 2016 - 13 Nov 2016  Assembling Ideas with Techniques by Xavier Monclús.
Exhibition  28 Sep 2016 - 31 Oct 2016  Revolutions.
Exhibition  01 Jun 2016 - 08 Jul 2016  Silent Architectures by Xavier Monclús.
Workshop  24 May 2016 - 27 May 2016  Creative Jewelry: form, texture, color by Xavier Monclús.
Workshop  31 May 2015 - 02 Jun 2015  Workshops. Florence Jewellery Week.
Exhibition  18 Jul 2014 - 03 Aug 2014  Jewelry Exhibition by Xavier Monclùs.
Exhibition  11 Jul 2014 - 30 Jul 2014  Menorca Contemporània.
Exhibition  29 Nov 2013 - 02 Mar 2014  Papallona / Mariposa / Butterfly.
Exhibition  27 Feb 2013 - 22 Mar 2013  CON–DECORADOS at Klimt02 Gallery.
Workshop  17 Mar 2012 - 25 Mar 2012  Xavier Monclús: Narrative Jewelry.
Meeting  26 Jan 2012 - 26 Jan 2012  TAST entre JOIES Nº2: XAVIER MONCLÚS.
Workshop  04 Nov 2011 - 12 Nov 2011  Xavier Monclús: Narrative Jewelry.
Exhibition  21 Oct 2011 - 10 Jan 2012  TOYS & DREAMS.
Exhibition  09 Sep 2011 - 09 Oct 2011  THE RING - jewel forever.
Exhibition  28 May 2011 - 02 Jul 2011  Xavier Monclús: The Penguins of Amsterdam.
Exhibition  01 Apr 2007 - 12 May 2007  New Horizons.
Exhibition  03 Oct 2006 - 11 Nov 2006  BUE-BOG-BCN gestos sobre el cuerpo.
Exhibition  15 Dec 2005 - 08 Jan 2006  De Rebus Naturae.

Publications      View / hide publications

Book:  Jewellery 1970–2015. Bollmann Collection. Arnoldsche Art Publishers:  Stuttgart,  2015
Book:  New Earrings: 500+ designs from around the world. Estrada, NicolasThames & Hudson:  Untied Kingdom,  2013
Book:  Hnoss depended. Galleri hnoss:  Gotheborg,  2008
Book:  Inner luxury. International contemporary jewellery. Gaspar, MònicaFundació “La Caixa”:  Barcelona,  2003
Book:  Jewellery Moves: Ornament for the 21st Century. Game, Amanda; Goring, ElisabethNMS publishing Limited, Nationals Museums of Scotland:  Scotland,