Ai Weiwei Ring W and Ring M 2018 24kt yellow gold rings 2.48 x 2.88 x 1.65 cm; 2.72 x 3.04 x 1.86 cm Edition of 6 (per model) After three years of intense artistic and social commitment, Ai Weiwei returns to create exclusive jewels in pure 24kt gold, which can be worn by both men and women. Ai Weiwei’s new and exclusive wearable art project reveals the artist’s continued interest in exploring themes of human migration and dignity. The statement pieces investigate what it means to be trapped, bound, and deprived of the freedom to travel and determine one’s own existence. By combining the artist’s signature iconography with iconic symbols of contemporary society, Ring W and Ring M depict stories of migrants, which unfold underneath a mysterious half-moon: by foot or by sea, some are portrayed travelling together and others alone. The artist’s use of 24kt gold as well as his reference to ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics further reinforce the power of the wearable artworks as representative of the artist’s acute social awareness and exquisite artistic craftsmanship. At its core, the wearable art project is a manifestation of Ai Weiwei’s sensitivity to the duality of human nature; our capacity for both empathy and destruction.
Sissi Nidi (Nests), 2019 18kt gold threads, rubies, sapphires, emeralds, and diamonds ring 4.2 x 4.2 cm circa Unique Nidi (Nests) is a project inspired by the idea of a safe place, these wearable sculptures like the natural nests, embrace the life and the body of the wearer. Manual ability is central in Sissi’s work: she delicately intertwines and welds gold and silver threads with coloured stones to make a new skin that represents an extension between her work and her body in the space. In the artist’s practice, everything starts from a small element that grows and develops in different forms. This flow take shape from the soul of the artist and is articulated from the body with a potentially infinite form.
Sophie Whettnall, Bracelet and Ring, 2019 18 kt yellow satin gold bracelet, H 5cm edition of 6, signed and numbered “I had never designed jewelry before, nor had the idea of doing it ever crossed my mind. But when a friend asked if I’d be interested, I immediately said yes. My points of reference were very personal: I wanted to design something that I could see myself wearing, and something that would have a continuity with my work as an artist. That meant that there would have to be holes; recently, I have been particularly fascinated by the texture created through drilling. And there would have to be folds or curves, because they are elegant and mysterious: what’s on the other side? These two considerations led me to think of the bracelet and ring: flat surfaces that would become textured through drilling and voluminous through folding. Surprisingly, pretty much the first sketches I made felt right, and I resisted every impulse to tinker with them.” – Sophie Whettnall
Paolo Canevari Lupa Romana, 2019 oxidised silver, 18 kt yellow gold and diamonds pendant/bracelet H 3 cm, W 9.5 cm internal diameter 5 cmm edition of 10 Signed and numbered Paolo Canevari continues his analysis of the iconography of power in this beautiful pendant necklace, which can also be worn as a bracelet. The official symbol of the City of Rome today, the She-Wolf has been venerated by Romans since the times of antiquity for her nurturing and protective powers. With the animal’s traditional representation of instinct, intelligence and value of interpersonal connections, Lupa Romana is an invitation to reflect on what these metaphysical qualities mean to us.
John Moore Elytra Gold and Sunset Earrings 18kt gold and sunset colours aluminium earrings (reversible) 9.0 cm Unique Oxford’s Pitt Rivers museum hums with the intense, magical energy of its tribal artefacts – jewellery that springs from the natural world. This is where the story of Elytra began. The name Elytra comes from the forewings of beetles. The overlapping structure is reminiscent of the repeating patterns of fish, feathers and plants.
Chiharu Shiota Carrying Memory, 2018 18kt yellow gold and oxidised silver necklace ⌀ 20 cm Unique within a series of 8 plus 2 AP. Signed Through the use of 18kt gold, Chiharu Shiota intricately intertwines and folds threads which gradually expand into the universe, becoming an extension of the body in space. For the necklace, Chiharu Shiota chose to create the art piece around a key, a meaningful object related to everyday life. Viewing keys as “familiar and very valuable things that protect important people and spaces in our lives”, the artist invites us to make a profound and treasured connection with the necklace. Within the golden threads, Shiota suspends the contrasting silver key with a powerful, dark and dreamlike potency.
Meret Oppheinem Sugar ring, 2014 – design from 1936 Silver gold plated, sugar, white marble 34 x 25 x 20 mm Numbered Unlimited edition Gems and Ladders Edition ‘I love natural materials. But everything man makes is nature, even plastic, even the atomic bomb,’ Meret Oppenheim observed in an interview with Valie Export in 1975. The sugar ring, which Meret Oppenheim designed in the mid-1930s, is an absurd and delightful combination of artifice and so-called nature, of opulent and cheap materials. The throwaway and frangible sugar cube is elevated to the status of a lasting, precious stone; an edible material is made wearable. At any time the wearer can exchange the cube for a fresh ‘jewel’. Courtesy of the Artist and Gems and Ladders
Carol Bove Untitled, 2016 Blackened aluminium, silver 85 mm Edition of 25 Gems and Ladders Edition With these earrings, Carol Bove recreates the four light fittings that hang outside the David H. Koch Theater in New York. The building was originally called the New York State Theater; it was built as part of New York State’s participation in the 1964–65 World’s Fair and is owned by the City of New York. The building’s architect was Philip Johnson, who united neoclassicism and modernism and was famously inspired by Mies van der Rohe. Courtesy of the Artist and Gems and Ladders