Archivi tag: the contemporary tekné


Vi sono ambiti (artistici e non) nei quali la più rigida delle discipline consegna agli autori una tale libertà espressiva da travalicare i confini fisici della materia sulla quale si opera  dando ad essa contorni sì vertiginosi da regalare,  a chi guarda, solo rarefatta bellezza.

Così come mondo dell’arte contemporanea, nel quale i concetti sono sovvertiti e le gerarchie dei materiali viaggiano in completa libertà, così anche le “regole” che disciplinavano l’oreficeria e la gioielleria di ricerca hanno subito forti scossoni: tutti i materiali  ora sono eleggibili ad essere considerati “preziosi”; le pietre (tutte!), il materiale plastico e una miriade di oggetti  hanno  trovato ciascuno una propria via ed  un linguaggio peculiare. Li considero piccoli microcosmi nei quali universale e particolare dialogano aprendosi allo spettatore su superfici parlanti.

E parlanti sono le superfici dell’artista danese Per Suntum  con l’argento che si fa quasi crosta lunare o che s’increspa cupo come un mare in battaglia; che s’accidenta  come un terreno carsico…  fino a dialogare con oro, palladio alabastro per regalarci opere di una tale levità e bellezza che vi lascio ammirare qui di seguito… ed in un finale metissaggio che mi è fiorito giusto davanti agli occhi!



PER SUNTUM, Interplay # 3,  Brooch 2006, Silver, fine silver. Pahlman Collection (source PER SUNTUM WEBSITE)


PER SUNTUM , No Water No Moon,  Brooch 2013. Silver, niello, urushi, 18kt gold (source: ARTIST’s WEBSITE)

There are working fields (artistic  or non-creative ones) where the most rigid discipline offers to the authors such a freedom of expression able  to go beyond the physical boundaries of the matter on which they are working in order to give to the viewer only a vertiginous, rarefied beauty.

Thus, as in contemporary art world, in which all concepts are subverted and hierarchies of materials travel in complete freedom, so the “rules” of goldsmithing and jewelry have suffered significant shocks: all materials are now eligible to be considered “precious”; stones (all of them), the plastic materials and a myriad of media are hosted in new, unpredictable creations and each object found its own path and peculiar language. I consider them small worlds in miniature where universal and particular dialogue together, opening the viewer on truly “speaking” surfaces.

And those of the Danish art jeweler PER SUNTUM are really speaking surfaces: where silver is almost a lunar crust; or when it’s rippling gloomy like a sea in battle… Sometimes metals are rugged or heavenly polished, creating dialogues with gold, alabaster and  palladium, offering us works of such a lightness and beauty that I leave you admire them below … and in a special métissage which  simply  bloomed before my eyes!


PER SUNTUM, From many Moons ago, Brooch 2007. Fine silver, silver, pigment, 18kt gold (source Artist’s website)


PER SUNTUM, The moon – snows only companion – Brooch 2005. 18kt gold, alabast. The Danish Art Foundation (source Artist’s website)


PER SUNTUM, “No more than one” Brooch 2005. 18kt gold, silver, niello, alabast. Pahlman Collection and “Park-Misty” Brooch 2005. 18kt gold, shibuichi. Private collection (source Artist’s website) with DOLCE E GABBANA, ALTA MODA IN CAPRI, dress from Spring Summer HC 2014 (source VOGUE UK)

A presto!



Fashion always referred to Art as source of inspiration: hommages to artists and painters are a long leit-motiv during history of fashion…and, in some fortunate cases, this fascination for arts gave  us such memorable creative marriages like the one of Elsa “Schiap” Schiaparelli and Salvador Dalì.

Elsa "Schiap" Schiaparelli and Salvador Dalì

Elsa “Schiap” Schiaparelli and Salvador Dalì

Their collaboration, starting from the early 1937, reached its maximum with the fall-winter collection 1938-1939 with some greatest pieces as The Lobster Dress, The Tears Dress, The Skeleton Dress and The Shoe Hat.

Lobster Dress, 1938 and Tears Dress

Lobster Dress      and       Tears Dress

Skeleton Dress, 1939

Skeleton Dress, 1939

Shoe hat, courtesy of Palais Galliera

Shoe hat, courtesy of Palais Galliera

That unconventional eye on fashion was really a shock, not only because Schiap  was convinced that “in difficult times, fashions is always outrageous”, but also because that surrealist twist launched the idea of the concept of “wereable art”.   Schiaparelli’s collaborations included Jean Cocteau, Leonor Fini and Alberto Giacometti and no wonder that Coco, at that time, called Schiap as “the artist that makes clothes”.    By the way, both Schiap and Coco were the only two who ruled Paris fashion stage at that time, but that outrageous eye gave such a twist …and a breath of surrealism broke the air.

Nowadays, when the House of Schiaparelli is finally on stage providing us memorable haute couture runways, it’s nice to see how that fil-rouge, created and wanted by the founder, still emerges from the fabrics and creations just to take place on mesmerizing sequined shoulders or in elegant details that recall the memory of things.

Salvador Dal', Eye of Tie, brooch- 1959, courtesy of AD and House of Schiaparelli, haute couture coll. 2015

Salvador Dal’, Eye of Time, brooch, 1949 [courtesy of AD] and House of Schiaparelli, Haute Couture coll. 2015.

 This métissage, of course, is a clear tribute to Dalì: directly derived from his “Eye of time” brooch, created in 1949: the House of Schiaparelli wants to give a direct homage to the great surrealist painter and artist who created a fabulous jewels collection (now shown at Figueres Museum) and collaborated with Elsa: a sort of memory thread never cut.

To me, of course,  this subterranean river made of details wisely sprinkled all over creations is a feast for my eyes and a delight for my memory’s drawers: how pleasing is when you can easily detect all those interconnected inputs you have in your mind that are waiting for you, as a long path made of tiny little pebbles?

But, far from this enchantment, one thing is noticeable: more often (as my wise friend P. says) fashion is becoming reinterpretation, without any room for creativity itself. So, I ask myself: when fashion imitates Art, or borrows some specific peculiarities from it…is still “creation” or a lack of it? Moreover: do you think that nowadays, such imaginative collaborations as the one of Schiap and Dalì are still possibile….? is there yet an absolute outrageous eye?

A dress [a jewel too!] has no life of its own unless it is worn, and soon as it happens another personality takes over from you and animates it, or tries to, glorifies or destroys it, or makes it into a song of beauty Elsa Schiap


  • Elsa Schiaparelli, Shocking Life: The Autobiography of Elsa Schiaparelli, V&A ed.;
  • Emma Baxter-Wright, The Little book of Schiaparelli, Carlton ed. 2012;
  • Judith Watt, Vogue on: Elsa Schiaparelli, Quadrille ed. 2012;
  • Andrew Bolton- Harold Koda, Schiaparelli and Prada. Impossible conversations; Exhbition catalogue, Met Museum, 2012;
  • Marisa Schiaparelli Berenson, Schiaparelli’s Album, Thames & Hudson, 2014.
  • Meryle Secrest, Elsa Schiaparelli: A biography, Fig Tree ed. 2014;


A presto,