It is as early as the 1860s that art jewellery emerged, as a reaction from the jewellers to the industrialization and the beginning of jewellery mass production. Experimenting different materials, art jewellery artists were part of a large international movement of design reform, seeking for a new identity. There was then in the 1940s a second wave which solidified the place of art jewellery amongst other jewellery types. Even if it was still not widely known, it started to appeal to a select crowd with artistic taste, from there a few jewellery artists got the opportunity to showcase their work in museums and galleries. From then onwards, art jewellery started to make its way into the art world. Something important to know is that art jewellery can be made out of any kind of material, precious or not. It isn’t necessarily wearable jewellery. Some pieces are worn in a “traditional” way while some other are more like a mini-sculpture or a decorative object.
In Antwerp, Galerie Beyond acts like an ambassador of art jewellery. Karin De Buysere and René Darmont are the couple behind Galerie Beyond and are sharing their passion of art jewellery already for over 15 years. They are working continuously to raise awareness about this niche market and to promote the work of their artists.
Galerie Beyond wants you to live an experience from the moment you enter their eye-pleasing minimalistic art space. Their soft ambiance music will carry you gently around the gallery, from their main exhibition on the ground floor, to their side exhibition at the mezzanine level. If your thirst for discovering art jewellery pieces is not yet fully satisfied, you can also check out their permanent exhibition.
The gallery is currently representing a cohesive mix of 25 national and international jewellery artists, which were carefully selected for the originality of their work and their technical approach. Karin considers her group of artists like a family where she encourages them to share their ideas and opinions and guides them to achieve the best of themselves.
Presentation of the works is crucial for a gallery and that is why Karin spends a lot of time trying to make the experience of her clients as interactive and pleasant as it can be. On January 26th, Galerie Beyond is organizing its first round table with the aim of connecting and sharing ideas amongst people within the jewellery sphere. The topic of the evening will be “Screens for Jewellery” and will be moderated by Anneleen Swillen, a PhD researcher on “the art of the expressive potential of presentation within contemporary art jewellery practice”.
Organizing a new exhibition every six weeks, Karin and René are currently preparing “Belgians and Swedes”, opening on January 29th,. After connecting with a Swedish art jewellery gallery, Galerie Beyond set up a swapping exhibition where the work of five Belgian and five Swedish jewellery artists would be presented in Sweden and then in Belgium. For this exhibition, they will not only invite people to see inspiring new pieces but also to let them observe and reflect whether they notice cultural influences in those pieces.
Let yourself discover and fall in love with art jewellery by visiting Galerie Beyond in Antwerp at Sint Jorispoort 27 .
The Art Connector