Gésine Hackenberg, born 1972 in Germany, lives and works in Amsterdam (the Netherlands). She was trained as a goldsmith in Germany and studied jewellery design at the Fachhochschule für Gestaltung Pforzheim (Germany). In 2001 she received her degree from the Gerrit Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam (NL). She is currently Visiting Professor at the MAD-Faculty in Hasselt (Belgium) and teaching since 2008 technical metalsmithing classes at the VakschoolEdelsmeden in Amsterdam. Three times she has received received a grant from The Netherlands Foundation for Visual Arts, Design and Architecture as well as other awards such an award for modern silver by the Stokroos Foundation combined with an exhibition at the Netherlands Zilvermuseum Schoonhoven (NL).
Selected Public Collections
CODA Museum Apeldoorn (NL)
Gemeentemuseum Den Haag (NL)
Los Angeles County Museum of Art, CA (USA)
Mima Middelsbrough Institute of Modern Art (UK)
Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam (NL)
Museum of Arts and Design, NY (USA)
National Museums Scotland (UK)
Nederlands Zilvermuseum Schoonhoven (NL)
Nordenfjeldske Kunstindustrimuseum Trondheim (NO)
Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam (NL)
Victoria and Albert Museum (UK)
A basic theme in my work is placing ordinary objects of use in the perspective of jewelry. Objects of daily use often become intimately important and indispensable to people. What one keeps and owns, often contains an emotional value next to its practical function or worth. It even can be seen as a representation of its owner. In my work, I explore how these kinds of objects can relate to the body and examine their coherence through the literal connection. Wearing jewellery on the body is the most intimate and direct form of showing this specific relationship to an object.
Various traditions linked to objects, the history of those objects and stories about them are a great source of inspiration for me. I like to reinterpret classical genres of art- and jewellery history, always relating those topics to my own contemporary context.
My pieces are based on craft techniques and various materials, which are telling their own stories about preciousness and adornment, like ceramic tableware, (precious) metal, Japanese Urushi lacquer and glassware. These usually come from interlocking themes of household, kitchen, table and food culture. Sometimes, I give objects a new life by transforming them. In a way, I am reusing and recycling material. By doing so, I am isolating the various layers of meanings and associations that inhere shape, pattern and material of an object, in order to reflect these values in my jewellery.