It’s our 5th birthday! For five years, Current Obsession has been bringing you something new, something you didn’t know you wanted. You could even call us rebellious – always trying to create different ways to experience jewellery. By publishing magazines and papers and by organising our own events and exhibitions, we wrote our own rules.
This year, we break them.
For Munich Jewellery Week 2018, you will not find the Current Obsession Paper to which you may have been accustomed in previous years, oh no. Instead, we give you a programme: based on an open call we released last year, this is an experimental series of events for artists, by artists that do and seek something else. Being one of them ourselves, Current Obsession has always celebrated those who go outside the lines. So in the spirit of rebellion and in celebration during contemporary jewellery’s most exciting time of year, we are happy to introduce a new, weeklong jewellery festival: DOING THE NO NO.
DOING THE NO NO deals with the ideas of the unconventional, the unaccepted and the ambiguous. It delves into the economy between attraction and repulsion, and the uncharted area of ambiguity, inhabited by the ideas beyond the boundaries of what is considered ethical or aesthetical, taboo or kink.
A word to describe the double bind between attraction and repulsion doesn’t exist. As a jewellery magazine and platform, we would like to define or invent that word, and to explore the different aspects this theme touches upon, always coming back to the field of jewellery.
Every day for seven days at The Lovelace Hotel Happening, Kardinal-Faulhaber-Straße 1, new events will take place. From the relaxed Monday Movie Night, Tuesday’s Students Salon, Wednesday Theory Day, Thursday Jewellery Dinner, Friday Fotocopy and CO Birthday Party, to Saturday’s Performance and finally, Sunday’s Brunch – we will make sure you will love them all.
See the complete list of events below. We can’t wait to see you there and celebrate together!
DOING THE MOVIE
Monday 5 March from 20:00 at Studio 2
We are kicking off slowly, with the classics of the silver screen, a sparkling selection of films in which jewellery plays an important or a plot-turning role. Come by for some glamorous movie time with popcorn.
DOING THE SALON
Tuesday, 6 March from 19:00 on the 2nd and 3rd floors
The second day of the DOING THE NO NO festival invites the visitors to the Salon – an experimental setting for jewellery presentations and performances run by a group of students from three different art academies – Konstfack / Ädellab from Stockholm, Sweden, PXL_MAD from Hasselt, Belgium, and Gerrit Rietveld Academy from Amsterdam, the Netherlands.
The continuously running day programme will include a series of workshop-like presentations inviting viewers inside the artistic thinking process behind jewellery-making, live exhibitions and conceptual participatory performances.
Konstfack / Ädellab: Maja Bakken, Linnea Bergman, Linnéa Jonsson, Yasmin Knüsel, Emelie Liljebäck, Justas Pipinis, Elisa Schneider, Sabira Silcock, Inga Tsernova
PXL_MAD: Hester Daems, Camille El-Achkar, Selien Lips, Maria Luisa Quartin, Janika Slowik, Gertjan Vandezande
Gerrit Rietveld Academy, performance by Eloïse Dieutegard:
Silent arm wrestling with a silk glove on one hand, and a needle with a golden thread in the other. The aim is to sew the gloves together while arm wrestling. Here, the confrontation and the show of strength are opposed by the action of sewing the two gloves together, which reveals fragility and union.
Lone Ranger Atom Bomb Ring
by Nanna Melland
Nanna Melland is a conceptual artist, whose work mainly deals with the subject of ambiguity. For DOING THE NO NO she proposed a project titled the Lone Ranger Atom Bomb Ring.
In early 1947 an advertisement for a new toy ring inside a million boxes of the Kix Cereals cold breakfast meals (15 cents plus a boxtop) was appearing in newspapers.
Marketed as ‘perfectly safe’ this toy ring is in fact a very complex object, the very existence of which touches upon the culture of ‘war play’ and glorification of violence.
In historic retrospect, Nanna Melland examines the object carefully, recasting it in the metal of toy soldiers – zinc. Her presentation is a work-in-progress, where visitors would be able to see the original ring and its wax models, participate in conversation with the artist and purchase a yet-to-be-made ring.
DOING THE THEORY
Wednesday, 7 March from 10:00 at the Flying Lobby and Studio 3
Curated by Norwegian Crafts.
When viewing contemporary jewellery as art, we face a major challenge that effects how we write about it, talk about it and show it: Should jewellery be treated, viewed and presented as sculpture in galleries, or as wearable objects?
We say neither and both!
It is no secret that Modern Western aesthetics, which is the philosophical grounding for discussing art history, fine art and contemporary art, is based on the writings of Immanuel Kant and the legacy of his theory about a disinterested viewer who sees works of fine art as devoid of utilitarian purpose.*
When applying this aesthetic philosophy to jewellery, a problem arises because these objects are situated in everyday life. They are entangled with use, wearability and ornamentation and serve as signifiers in public space outside the art context; they resist being perceived as autonomous art objects.
During Munich Jewellery Week, we see a number of jewellery practises dealing with and trying to push the boundaries between jewellery and art. Some of these adapt strategies from different forms of contemporary art to activate the jewellery objects as carriers of philosophical meaning; others find paths that commit equally to jewellery and art. We suggest that the problem is not that jewellery is not art (because it is), but that when seeking to place jewellery within a contemporary art discourse, the discussions are founded on an aesthetic that alienates or renders obsolete the wearability and social aspects of jewellery.
Ahmad Umar is a cross-disciplinary artist who came to Norway in 2008 as a political refugee. His practice is strongly influenced by the themes of his upbringing and his experiences of living in a society structured by religion. His works recreate a narrative of his own life story utilising various techniques such as sculpture, printmaking, painting and performance. In his attempt to resolve the contradictions of living in a distant and secular place, Umar mobilises these methods to explore the complex relationship between identity, authority, sexuality, depression and art. His work is charged with social critique, a sense of directness, Arabic calligraphy and a hint of his Nubian visual heritage. They reflect his memories and signal a long process of self-understanding and acceptance.
Jorge Manilla investigates his environment – religion, emotions, relationships and the meaning of life.
Over the last years the artist has rediscovered his love for the black colour. To the artist black relates to something hidden, the secretive and the unknown, and as a result it creates an air of mystery. It keeps things bottled up inside, hidden from the world. His dark forms and shapes create a barrier between the meanings of the objects and the outside world. Black implies self-control and discipline, independence and a strong will. It gives an impression of authority and power. For Manilla black is the end, but the end always implies a new beginning. When light appears, black becomes white, the color of new beginnings.
DOING THE DINNER
Thursday, 8 March at the Flying Lobby
SOCIAL CLUB: How is online media used within contemporary art jewellery practices and what are the possibilities as well as challenges hereof on the creation, presentation and perception of art jewellery?
from 10:00-11:00 at the Flying Lobby
Hosted by Anneleen Swillen
from 20:00-22:00 at the Flying Lobby
Book your Jewelry Dinner tickets here (limited availability)
On Thursday evening we will invite public to witness The Dinner, a phenomenal project first initiated by jewellers Mia Maljojoki and Annika Pettersson in 2016. The aim for the project was to create a jewellery exhibition with multiple layers of information relating to jewellery. The dinner is an event where everything is set on display: a group a people gets invited to have a dinner, during which the guests are asked to wear contemporary jewellery and discuss a specific topic. The dinner event itself is takes part in a public space and is seen as a performance.
Annika and Mia have created a new series of jewellery that will be displayed during the Dinner #5 during MJW 2018. The two artists have their own way of relating to the theme of DOING THE NO NO: one focusing on the process of copying, and the other focusing on the idea of beauty. Each diner guest will be assigned a specially selected jewellery piece created for this project that they will wear while they dine.
The Dinner is seen as a performance act, where the guests are set on display for the duration of a three-course meal. The reformative act is key point in this this project; it making the guests conscious of their movements, their actions while adding awareness to the dining act.
During the Dinner, one subject is explored and examined from different perspectives. The guests have been specifically selected to represent a diverse group of professionals from various fields. By having an interdisciplinary group we can explore the act of wearing and performing from different perspectives. The jewellery pieces that are worn during the dinner can bee seen as conversation starters and as a physical representation of the theme.
AT THE STILL POINT
Performance by Silke Fleischer
from 14:00-16:00 in the hotel room
A few years ago during a trip to Japan, Fleischer experienced the art of shibari: the Japanese art of rope bonding, its aesthetics and technical aspects.
Religious ceremonies in Japan involve ropes and ties to symbolise connections among people and the divine, as well as to delineate sacred spaces and times. Everyday life is also somehow tied together; think of the Kimono, which has neither buttons nor hooks, but instead is closed by ritually tying long strips of fabric around the body.
Whilst working with silver chains and ropes Fleischer’s research went into directions of free movement and restricted movement. During the festival Doing the No No she will work with ropes, eight meter lengths of two-ply black jute combined with knots, silver, hematite and broidery as a study material. She investigates the moment through movement and at the same time the restrictions these mediums offer. The artist is thinking of the bindings less as robe and more as sculpture, body, space, landscape, marks, and of the experience as a proces of ‘being tied’ rather than just of wearing.
DOING THE FOTOCOPY
Friday, 9 March on the 2nd floor
SOCIAL CLUB: Five Years Doing The No No
Current Obsession invites friends, contributors and partners to talk about the past, the present and the future of our practice and an impact we have had in the field of contemporary jewellery.
from 10:00-11:00 at the Flying Lobby
Hosted by Current Obsession
from 11:00-23:00 on the 2nd floor
FOTOCOPY is a ONE DAY ONLY pop-up marathon zine-making copy shop/jewelry store front by Kellie Riggs and Adam Grinovich. Come hang and question realness, narcissism, the origin of ideas, sleeper cell trends, reference culture, authenticity, appropriation, ownership, derivatives, tropes, and throwbacks – and buy some jewels, zines and t-shirts! There might be drinks, too.
Artists: Volker Atrops (DE), Lucie Davis (UK), Kiko Giannocca (CH), Adam Grinovich (US/SE), Annika Pettersson (SE), Kellie Riggs (US/IT), Moniek Schrijer (NZ), Katrin Spranger (DE/UK), Ashley K. Wahba (US), Julia Walter (DE/NL), Mallory Weston (US) & @ana_na
DOING THE NO NO: CURRENT OBSESSION BIRTHDAY PARTY
from 21:00 at the Rooftop Bar
DOING THE PERFORMANCE
Saturday, 10 March from 22:00 at the Rooftop Bar
from 10:00-11:00 at the Flying Lobby
from 22:00 at the Rooftop Bar
On Saturday evening we are hosting a performance by Munich-based Japanese-Bayern jazz band Sasebo. The band’s connection to jewellery is its flute/saxophone player –the famous Swiss jeweller David Bielander, the recent awardee of the Swiss Design Award 2017.
Toshio Kusaba: Lamento, Gesang
Yutaka Minegishi: Gitarre, Snake Skin Guitar
Carl Tokujiro Mirwald: japan. Schlagwerk, Gesang, Schlagzeug
Ivi Vukelic: Gitarre, Mandola
Tinka Kuhlmann: Akkordeon, Gesang
David Bielander: Klarinette, Piccolo, Saxophon
Andi Koll: Tuba Dirk Eisel: Drums/ Schlagwerk
DOING THE MORNING AFTER
Sunday, 11 March
from 11:00-14:00 on the 3rd floor
The final day, Sunday, is when everyone normally goes to the matinee talk at the Pinakothek Der Moderne and later catches their flights back home. We would like to carefully interrupt this routine by hosting a warm Morning After brunch with eggs Benedict, coffee and croissants. This salutation event will be a perfect opportunity to reflect on the past week, discuss future opportunities and say our goodbyes.
About Munich Jewellery Week
Munich Jewellery Week is an independent initiative that supports, communicates and promotes citywide jewellery exhibitions taking place during the week of the annual Handwerk & Design expo, and its historic jewellery exhibitions: Meister der Moderne, Schmuck and Talente.
Over the past decade, the gradual and organic expansion of the independent city exhibitions surrounding these events boomed to a remarkable 100+ initiatives (2017 edition), establishing a self-ruled dynamic community of local and international artists. This phenomenon is unique, and plays a pacemaking role in the contemporary jewellery field: hundreds of makers, students, educators and collectors come from all over the world to be inspired by this diverse programme that ranges from artist-run exhibitions, book launches and lectures to performances, mobile presentations and parties.
About The Lovelace Hotel
Lovelace Hotel is a cultural happening, with music, art, conferences, workshops and more situated in the centre of Munich in an old building from the Deutsche Bank. For two years Lovelace will run a programme next to their 30 design hotel rooms. http://thelovelace.com
Contact & more info: firstname.lastname@example.org
* (Critique of Judgment, § 44: 306)
Special thanks to all the participants, and to all the artists that took time to answer to our open call!