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The Museum of Arts and Design Announces Jewelry Artists and Honorees for LOOT 2013: MAD About Jewelry

50 Jewelry Artists from 20 Countries to be Featured in the Annual Exhibition and Sale of Contemporary Jewelry

Fashion Icon Iris Apfel and Renowned Fashion Jewelry Collector Barbara Berger are Recipients of 2013 LOOT Award for Contemporary Art Jewelry


Gerda and Nikolai Monies

New York, NY (May 1, 2013)

LOOT 2013: MAD About Jewelry, The Museum of Arts and Design's annual exhibition and sale of one-of-a-kind, artist-made jewelry will return this fall from October 1–5, 2013. Now in its 13th year, LOOT has become the ultimate pop-up shop for contemporary studio and art jewelry, offering the public the rare opportunity to meet some of the most innovative jewelry artists in the world and directly acquire pieces from them. Over 50 jewelers from 20 countries are represented in this year's exhibition and sale. LOOT 2013 will also showcase the work of two jewelry students from New York's Pratt Institute. Proceeds from the show benefit the Museum's exhibition and education programs.

A varied mix of international jewelry artists has long been one of LOOT's attractions, and this year is no exception. Among the artists featured will be jeweler Eva Steinberg whose exceptional Art Nouveau-inspired jewelry—made mostly of yellow gold and accented by diamonds and pearls—will be shown alongside up-and-coming designers such as Stephan Hampala, whose intricately beaded jewelry provokes a textile quality and Yoko Shimizu, whose work in resin is bold and colorful—occasionally inspired by the organic qualities of wood. Countries represented this year include Argentina, Denmark, Indonesia, Japan, Poland, South Africa, South Korea, and the United Kingdom. A wide variety of materials is also well represented, including traditional ones like 18K gold, sterling silver, bronze, titanium, aluminum, pearls, and semiprecious stones to more unusual ones like 3D printed nylon, glass, felt, porcelain, volcanic lava, recycled rope, fossils, and industrial springs.


"LOOT has become a premiere jewelry shopping experience in New York. There is no other event that offers the public a chance to see such a wide variety of expressive and original jewelry from around the world, meet the artists—and maybe take home a piece or two for their own collection," says Michele Cohen, LOOT Chair. "LOOT builds on MAD's longstanding history of presenting contemporary art jewelry. We are delighted to bring so many artists into the Museum and so much new work to the public through this event."

Like last year, a Museum-wide jewelry study day, featuring panels and programs on contemporary art jewelry, will be part of the exhibition. Also returning this year as curator of the exhibition and sale is Bryna Pomp, a jewelry specialist; she selected the artists for their originality, use of materials, and expert craftsmanship.

As part of this year's festivities, the Museum will honor two fashion icons with the 2013 LOOT Award for Contemporary Art Jewelry: Iris Apfel and Barbara Berger. At 91, Apfel continues to be a doyenne of personal style. Regarded as a fashion icon, she is often seen wearing elaborate and colorful costume jewelry as documented by style photographers like The New York Times' Bill Cunningham. As a young woman, Apfel began her foray into fashion and design working for Women's Wear Daily. While running a textile firm with her husband, Apfel established herself as an in-demand interior designer, with projects including design restorations at the White House for nine U.S. presidents. Her friend and fellow award recipient Barbara Berger is a well-known figure among jewelry and fashion enthusiasts. Berger has built an impressive collection of fashion jewelry, over 4,000 pieces, spanning the past five decades. Highlights from this treasure trove of jewels, which includes couture jewelry from Yves Saint Laurent, Dior, and Miriam Haskell, will be on view in the exhibition Fashion Jewelry: The Collection of Barbara Berger at MAD from June 25, 2013 – January 11, 2014.


"We are constantly looking for artists whose work shows original and innovative design, artistic expressiveness, and outstanding craftsmanship," added Pomp. "The process took us to different parts of the world and allowed us to meet a far-reaching group of artists and explore the latest trends and techniques in contemporary jewelry-making. We are very pleased to be able to bring such a diverse and exciting array of work together for LOOT."

A selection of participating artists in this year's LOOT includes:

  • Michael Berger (Germany) – Berger's hand-made collections feature kinetic rings that move and spin on the wearer's hand.
  • Dania Chelminsky (Israel) – Chelminsky works with contrasting materials, textures, and shapes, using pearl, gold, cameo and resin in unexpected ways to create elegant and modern pieces with a bold and feminine style.
  • Fabien Ifirès (France) – Ifirès, who worked previously as a leather artisan for a luxury atelier, is known for combining modern and traditional saddler techniques to create his jewelry collection of cuffs, necklaces, and earrings.
  • Claire Kahn (USA) – A former graphic designer for Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill, and designer of innovative fountains such as the one in New York's Columbus Circle, Kahn's studio work now includes jewelry. She weaves beads, stone, silver and gold to construct a linear mosaic on long, flexible ropes, which allows the wearer to wrap them around in layers to make a necklace uniquely their own.
  • Gerda and Nikolai Monies (Denmark) – The Danish duo makes dramatic, sculptural jewelry that amplify the materials they use. They work with a wide variety of materials including wood, semi-precious stones, horn and pearls.
  • Michihiro Sato (Japan) – By meticulously carving, coloring, and stacking layers of paper, Sato creates pendants and adornments that bloom and burst with lines and soft curves.
  • Jane Macintosh (UK) – Inspired by the Bauhaus movement, Macintosh crafts one-off simple yet bold jewelry using traditional goldsmithing skills. She combines silver with gold or palladium and uses a matte finish to bring out the subtle tones and colors.
  • David and Roberta Williamson (USA) – The Williamsons are known for nature-themed jewelry that use ephemera and found objects, some of which were passed down in their families. Juxtaposing various objects, they build intricate jewelry to evoke personal histories and memories.



Images of work by all the jewelry artists, their bios, and further information about the opening gala event and Jewelry Study Day will be posted on in May.


Each year, the LOOT Award for Contemporary Art Jewelry is presented to luminaries in the field of jewelry, including artists, collectors, and designers. This annual prize is in keeping with the long-standing commitment of the Museum of Arts and Design to presenting jewelry as an art form. MAD is the only American museum with a gallery dedicated to contemporary and modern studio and art jewelry, featuring both temporary jewelry exhibitions and installations from the permanent collection, which it began assembling soon after its founding in 1956.


LOOT 2013 is made possible in part through the generous support of the Silver Institute: Silver Promotion Service.




The Museum of Arts and Design's collection of contemporary and modern studio and art jewelry documents the development of studio jewelry from its origins in the post-World War II era to the present day and includes over 600 jewelry pieces ranging from the pioneering work of early American Studio Jewelers, such as Margaret De Patta and Sam Kramer, to the groundbreaking and nontraditional methods of contemporary artists like Peter Chang and Joyce J. Scott. 

MAD explores the intersection of art, craft, and design today, through exhibitions and programs focusing on contemporary creation, materials and processes, from handmade to digital. A dynamic roster of public programs engages visitors in the creative process, including open studios, workshops, tours, and master classes. Lectures, films, performances, and symposia related to the Museum's collection and current topics in the world of contemporary art, craft, and design are held in MAD's 144-seat auditorium.


For additional information, please contact:

Claire Laporte, Manager of Public Affairs
Carnelia Garcia, Public Relations Associate                          
Museum of Arts and Design                                      

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