Current Obsession, contemporary jewellery platform and Stedelijk Museum ’s- Hertogenbosch have jointly curated the exhibition CULT.
To wear jewellery is a private gesture. And when brought out into the public realm, it then becomes declarative of a following or expressive of devotion. It’s there for those who can read it.
CULT deals with the elusive ways jewellery relates to, and is reflective of, culture and identity. It may act as a highly personal manifestation of style and individuality, it also can be indicative of subcultural groupings, real or imagined. At times it’s even a vehicle for protection, or protest.
Man’s resolve to show allegiance to powerful doctrines, obscure social collectives, or anything in between, gives jewellery its ultimate seductive power: the ability to speak about personal belonging in a way no other object can. Wearing jewellery is a universally shared will, a phenomenon fascinating in all expressions.
For CULT, eight overlapping categories have been defined to help navigate the means through which this happens: identification, participation, non- conformation and fetish, persuasion, conformation, ritual and fantasy. How does wearing jewellery strengthen human relationships, or harness new kinds of social collectiveness? Is it subcultural, ideological, or both? Either way, the true allure of jewellery is cult.
To best demonstrate this, Current Obsession has invited twelve of the most forward thinking international jewellery artists, some of which are presenting not yet seen work: Alexander Blank, Shachar Cohen, Elvira Golombosi, Adam Grinovich, Nils Hint, Göran Kling, Takashi Kojima, Helena Lehtinen, Florian Weichsberger, Mallory Weston, Areta Wilkinson and Rei Yamada. A special piece from the Noordermarkt legend Happy Day will also be present.
Together with this selection, five additional artists have been commissioned to create new work especially for CULT, including artist duo Conversation Piece, iconoclast Volker Atrops, painter Kelsey Isaacs, and jeweller Edgar Mosa, who will create his works on the museum floor during a performance at the opening on the 14th of October.
To further punctuate the exhibition’s theme, Current Obsession has also gone through the museum’s collection and selected a vast array of both contemporary and historical works from jewellers and fine artists alike.
Photo: Lonneke van der Palen
Model: Roos Ferrero
Jewellery: Göran Kling