Who knew A-Listers loved jewelry this much? From RHONY star Heather Thompson to designer David Yurman to models Carol Alt and Alex Lundqvist, supporters and enthusiasts of both the art of jewelry and the iconic Museum of Arts and Design in NYC came out in droves to an exclusive preview event last Tuesday, April 26, at the Museum of Arts and Design’s iconic Columbus Circle housing. The event served as a preview for a jewelry show featuring over 40 designers, as well as an opportunity to offer recognition to some of jewelry’s biggest talents and advocates. Other attendees included trustee Barbara Tober, artist Beau McCall, MAD jewelry curator Bryna Pomp, producer Peter Wright, and more.
The MAD About Jewelry Award recipients included iconic British fashion and textile designer, Dame Zandra Rhodes, and the organization Art Jewelry Forum, accepted by Board Chair Bonnie Levine.
Zandra Rhodes has singlehandedly changed the world’s relationship to jewelry and textile, having designed garments for Diana, Princess of Wales and numerous celebrities such as Freddie Mercury. Her creativity is of the most classic sort, unbound by medium or intent; a true focus on beauty and form. As for Art Jewelry Forum, it’s a story of commitment. Established in 1997 to promote critical attention to contemporary jewelry, Art Jewelry Forum has become the leading voice for art jewelry’s advancement, serving to establish and elevate jewelry’s place in the world of art.
A true delight was the opportunity to encounter 40 emerging and acclaimed international jewelry artists, where guests could browse and intimately encounter works that are redefining art jewelry. As the only museum in the U.S. to have a permanent gallery devoted to contemporary jewelry, proceeds from the event will support MAD’s educational programming and jewelry exhibitions.
A global inventory of artist’s work were on view and available for purchase, including Agneta Bugyte‘s smooth, beautifully finished silver and 18k gold works, Jenny Luckett‘s contemporary, ultra-durable jewelry, Suna Bonometti’s architectural forms, and Belle Brooke Barer‘s stunning demonstrations of sustainable jewelry, often created with recycled metals. Overall, the state of jewelry is very focused on genderless practicality and forward thinking application, verging on the territory of wearable sculpture. A focus on thoughtful sourcing, process and technique has captured this world.