For our fall exhibition Bettina Speckner created spectacular new work. She made an abundance of earrings, made with semi-precious stones, fossils and pearls, complemented by brooches, of which the 'aluminium coral' series is really remarkable. The text following the images explains more about her work. The pieces of Bettina Speckner are so poetic and subtle that they almost beg to be scrutinized at close range. This catalogue gives you the opportunity to actually do so. Furthermore this is the first 'official' exhibition in the gallery after the long covid-shut-down, so all the more reason to celebrate!
If you like to experience the size and wearability of a specific piece, please visit us on Thursday, Friday and Saturday between 11.00 and 16.00 hrs in the gallery. If there is work you would like to get more information about, please contact us.
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THE PLANT IN US
Where is the borderline between nature and culture? Trees and plants will grow and blossom anyway, our feelings don't interest them. Only our own ideas and associations determine our appreciation. Does that grant us any right to adept nature to our wishes, if we feel the need to do so? In Bettina Speckners beautiful garden, high up in the mountains, she sets the right example: she only concerns herself with planning, arranging and steering. The result is more than the mere sum of its parts.
On her workbench she employs a similar approach. Speckners lifelong interest in precious stones – it started already in her childhood – still provides the starting point for a lot of her jewellery. During the realization of new pieces they play an important part: with love, insight, and lots of patience the artist guides the growth of her work. When putting plants in a garden, you can never fully predict the results, a situation very similar to a creative process. When the first idea emerges – call it inspiration – it is still a long way to a finished design, it is just the starting point of an intense quest. In conventional jewellery the focus is on pure, perfectly shaped gemstones, but Speckner is more interested in stones that don’t fit the bill, with inclusions, unusual colours, or deviating shapes. Stones are, just like plants, the result of developments that are slow and subject to all sorts of coincidences. Once you recognize their potential, there is the possibility of an exchange, a dialogue between maker and material. This understanding led the way to the magnificent ear jewellery that is displayed in our exhibition.
The past months Bettina Speckner took an unusual step: she purposefully crossed the line between nature and culture. She decided to make the coral for her latest brooches herself. She sculpted it from a sheet of aluminium, a light-weight material she already investigated during her time at the Munich Academy. The results form a perfect – completely convincing – symbiosis between shapes originating from the ocean and an industrial product. In the jewellery pieces water is lovingly embraced by the coral, while its red branches almost seem to overwhelm the other views. With this work it feels as if Speckner wants to return the natural to nature.