New York—Quebec jewelry designers are turning out extremely innovative pieces, as seen at the current exhibition at jewelry gallery Aaron Faber Gallery.
“Innovation and Craftsmanship in Metal: Jewelry Artists of Quebec,” running through May 26, introduces visitors to the thought-provoking designs coming out of Canada’s largest, and only French-speaking province.
“Contemporary jewelry-as-art is fairly new in Quebec, at the most 30- to 35 years old,” says artist Jean-Pierre Gauvreau, noting that Quebec society was traditionally more conservative. “For a long time, it was a sin to show off your wealth by wearing gold; young girls wanted their engagement ring to look like their grandma’s tiny white gold with tiny diamonds.”
The show features a variety of artisan silver and gold pieces–all worth a lingering look. From Barbara Stutman’s crocheted metal pieces to Claudio Pino’s caged gems, kinetic pieces and some of the most unique hinged knuckle covers you’ve ever seen.
And while we also loved Matthieu Cheminee’s rings, bracelets and necklaces made from rings fused together, we’re also impressed with his efforts to give back to West African jewelers. He filmed old jewelrymaking techniques from around the continent and created a video course, from which proceeds go to help West African jewelers. The ultimate goal? To open a jewelry school in Guinea.