2003 - Technology is Irrelevant to Jewelry Design - Or Is It?

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2003 - Technology is Irrelevant to Jewelry Design - Or Is It?

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Jewelry design is generally considered from an artistic standpoint, and the jewelry is viewed as an expression of a designer's artistic talent. However, to make an actual piece of jewelry requires use of technology in terms of manual craft skills, understanding of material behavior and the capabilities of manufacturing equipment. In just the same way, a painter or sculptor has to understand the materials and equipment that he/she uses. Thus, it would appear that there is some limited dependence on technology by the jewelry designer. But what about innovative, creative design? How does this relate to technology? "Not a lot" is a view of many designers. But is it true? Conversely, do the limitations of technology constrain a designer’s freedom to express his or her ideas? In this presentation, we explore the interrelationship of design and technology in terms of jewelry manufacture, with emphasis on its role in innovative design. This will show that technology is not irrelevant to creative design and that each feeds off the other. This interdependence will be illustrated with examples of how technology can create new design opportunities. Some examples of prize-winning designs, taken from the recent Gold Virtuosi II International Jewellery Design Competition, will demonstrate these points.

Author: Dr. Christopher W. Corti

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