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Recollection II, Tante Toos
brooch/ object, Oval
bronze, clay, glaze, steel, red brass, silver, epoxy
14 x 10,5 x 2,5cm

Recollection II, Tante toos
brooch/ object, Briolette
bronze, clay, glaze, steel, silver, epoxy
16,5 x 5,5 x 2,5cm

Recollection II, Tante Toos
brooch/ object, Drop
bronze, clay, glaze, steel, red brass, silver, epoxy
14 x 10 x 3cm

Recollection II, Tante Toos
brooch/ object, Navette
bronze, clay, glaze, steel, silver, epoxy
13x 8,5 x 3cm

Recollection II, Tante Toos
brooch/ object, Brilliant I
bronze, clay, glaze, steel, silver, epoxy
9,5 x 13,5 x 2,5cm

Recollection II, Tante Toos
brooch/ object, Baguette
bronze, clay, glaze, steel, silver, epoxy
15 x 6,5 x 2,5cm

Recollection II, Tante Toos
brooch/ object, Pear
bronze, clay, glaze, steel, red brass, silver, epoxy
14 x 10 x 3cm

Recollection II, Tante Toos
brooch/ object, Carré
bronze, clay, glaze, steel, red brass, silver, epoxy
13 x 9 x 2,5cm

Recollection II, Tante Toos
brooch/ object, Brilliant
bronze, clay, glaze, steel, red brass, silver, epoxy
10 x 10,5 x 2,5cm

Recollection II, Tante Toos
brooch/ object, Marquise
bronze, clay, glaze, steel, silver, epoxy
16 x 9 x 2cm

Recollection II, Tante Toos
brooch/ object, Emerald
bronze, clay, glaze, steel, silver, epoxy
14,5 x 9,5 x 3cm




Recollection II
video still 1975

Recollection II, Tante Toos
brooch/ object, Navettte II
bronze, clay, glaze, steel, red brass, silver, epoxy
13x 9 x 3,5 cm

Recollection II, Tante Toos
brooch/ object, Drop II
bronze, clay, glaze, steel, red brass, silver, epoxy
14x 10 x 3,5cm

Recollection II, Tante Toos
brooch/ object, Pear II
bronze, clay, glaze, steel, red brass, silver, epoxy
14 x 10 x 3cm



Recollection II, Tante Toos
collier, White oval
bronze, clay, glaze, steel, rope

Recollection II, Tante Toos
collier, Red oval
bronze, clay, glaze, steel, rope


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Recollection II
~Tante Toos~

This collection is inspired by the striking Cartier-like jewelry and other bejeweled pieces my grandmother wears. As a child I experienced her jewelry as a fascinating matter. Occasionally I could wear a piece out of a special box with less precious pieces. My grandfather collected art, antiques and jewelry. The brooches/ objects for the wall of “Recollection II” tell about my memories connected to my grandmother’s jewelry and about collecting as such. The shapes of the pieces are based on cutting shapes of precious stones.

The collection has a subtitle; “Tante Toos” or “Auntie Toos”. Tante Toos is my grandma’s sister. As a child I often went there with my mother to work in clay. My earliest memories of expressing myself creatively I associate with her. The glazes I used for this collection are a gift from Tante Toos.

Video Recollection II
This video is a private recording made in the mid seventies. The video shows my grandfather’s collection and also some pictures of me as a child playing with a crystal-shaped toy. To an outsider this video might seem a bit odd. After all, who wants to film his own “stuff”? For me this film shows my grandfather’s fascination for collecting. The objects form an inspiration for my work. Recollection tells about generations, memories and material things that evoke these memories.



Recollection I,
Booth Caroline van Hoek (BE), Design Miami/ Basel

“Recollection I” consists of one wall installation, a huge hanging necklace and an enlarged translation of a pendant in the shape of a strawberry. The title of the collection refers to a personal recollection of the jewelry pieces my grandfather collected for my grandmother, to my background in traditional jewelry making and to collecting in itself. In “Recollection” I reassemble the (re)collections.

The glass is made in collaboration with Nationaal Glasmuseum Leerdam (NL)



Recollection I
object detail, Drops
bronze, clay, wax, rope, metal, paint, resin
ca 4m




Recollection I
object, Strawberry
bronze, clay, glaze, rope, wool
ca 70cm



Recollection I +
wallintstallation detail, Blue
bronze, clay, glaze, steel
ca 1.50m x 2,50m





Recollection I
wallintstallation detail, Droplets
bronze, clay, glaze, steel
ca 1.50m x 2,50m


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text by Liesbeth den Besten

Recollection I

For reasons that elude her, Willemijn de Greef has an inclination towards big things. That might seem a rather curious trait for someone who came upon jewellery as the most suitable medium for artistic expression and research. With good reason, she regards herself as a visual and jewellery artist. Since her graduation at the jewellery department of the Gerrit Rietveld Academy in Amsterdam, in 2006, Willemijn creates large jewellery and objects. Her work has grown in size and potency ever since.
Already as a young girl Willemijn de Greef experienced jewellery as a fascinating matter. The jewels of her grandmother, who wears spectacular Cartier-like and other bejewelled pieces with womanly sophistication, are a source of inspiration. The inconsonance between the cautious way the jewellery was collected, cherished and saved by her grandfather (who was an art and jewellery collector), and the casualness of her grandmother, who wears it even during daily activities such as doing the dishes, cooking and gardening, is intriguing. All these memories and impressions added to Willemijn’s urge to make new work that could be observed as a monument for jewellery.
Her ‘jeweller’s eye’ is focused on details. But instead of working in an ornate way, she picks details and enlarges them, simplifies them, and renders them visible for the observer. This leads to enormous chains with giant glass beads that hang from the ceiling, or large ceramic teardrop forms in emerald colours that cover the wall – the visitor is invited to enter this scenery, amazed as Alice in her Wonderland where everything is out of proportion.
Because of her vocational background (before entering the Gerrit Rietveld Academy) she is fascinated by different crafts and techniques and how these are interwoven. While interacting with craftspeople she tries to invent her own techniques. She is not interested in mere outsourcing but wants to actually stay in touch with the materials. Willemijn loves to work in excellent centres of crafts industry, like Leerdam (glass), and to work with Steenbergen Ropemakers, the last Dutch rope-maker using natural fibres. The big green and blue glass beads were made in collaboration with National Glass Museum Leerdam, where she worked with glassblower Marek Effmert. The giant beads were blown into moulds specially made by the artist.
For both the glassblowers and the artist, this collaboration has been an ongoing research: will the moulds survive the force of blowing, how do they remain intact, how will the colours emerge? Nothing turns out to be exactly as anticipated; they have to adjust their ideas constantly. Willemijn treasures this element of chance and unpredictability, and she attests to the notion that imperfection is not a defect – on the contrary, it is a source of unexpected joy.
The beads and teardrops are infused by the early memories of her grandfather’s art and jewellery collection. At the basis of this giant necklace and the wall installation are ideas about collecting as such, and recollections of the forms of minerals or crystals, the cuts and vibrant colours of stones. The large red strawberry made of red-fired clay and glazed ceramic with red yarns is inspired by one of her grandmother’s pendants. But neither the giant beads, which hang from hefty ropes, nor the big strawberry, are merely enlarged translations of sparkling jewels. Through their enlarged scale, the ornaments have obtained an architectural impact that confronts the viewer in quite a different way than jewellery does. Yet references to jewellery are still there and within this cautious ambiguity Willemijn de Greef searches for the utmost expression.




Tradition
cufflinks/ button hole piece, Zeeuwse knopen
silver
ca 6cm


Tradition
necklace , Zeeuwse knopen I
rope, porcelain, silver
ca 30 x 25 x 5cm


Tradition
necklace , Touw, keramiek
rope, clay
ca 80 x 30 x 5cm


Tradition
necklace , Gevlochten touw 3 in 1
rope, silver
ca 110x 30 x 5cm


Tradition
necklace , Touw porselein
rope, porcelain
ca 70 x 25 x 4cm


Tradition
necklace , Ankerketting, porselein
porcelain, thread
ca 75 x 25 x 4cm


Tradition
earrings
gold, silver, plastic
ca 3cm


Tradition
necklace , Zeeuwse knopen
rope, porcelain, wood, silver
ca 30 x 25 x 6cm

Tradtion
These pieces were inspired by the men and women of the Zuiderzee in the North of the Netherlands and the people of Zeeland in the South of the Netherlands where I grew up. The pieces refer to the demise of the traditional fishing industry and traditional crafts aswell as to traditional costumes.

“Zeeuwse knopen” (Knopen = knots or buttons in Dutch). The cufflinks or buttonholepieces refer to the buttons worn by the fishermen of Zeeland. They are worn at their throat as a closure for their shirt. The neck pieces were worn as a kind of an insurance. If a fisherman drowned and his body was found, the gold would at least ensure a decent grave for him, though not necessaraly in the village of his birth.

The “Zeeuwse knopen” were also worn by women on their head to keep their caps in place and as ordinary buttons. The earrings I made refer also to headpins. They are simular to the pins worn at the island of Zuid-Beveland , Zeeland.

The rope pieces are made with the help of Steenbergen Ropemakers in Gorssel. It is one of the few remaining rope-making firms in the Netherlands and the last one still using natural materials like hemp and flax.

Zuiderzeewerken II
necklace, Op hoop van zegen
silver, gold
30 x 25 x 3cm

Zuiderzeewerken II
necklace, Drijvers
silver, rope, clay
30 x 25 x 6cm

Zuiderzeewerken II
necklace, Touw porselein
green threads, glazed porcelain, rope
80 x 30 x 5cm

Zuiderzeewerken II
necklace, Touw - zilver - touw
silver, rope, yellow thread
80 x 30 x 3cm

Zuiderzeewerken II
necklace, Gevlochten touw
silver, rope
24 x 24 x 4cm

Zuiderzeewerken II
necklace, Gedraaid touw
silver, rope
24 x 23 x 4cm

Zuiderzeewerken II
necklace, Spakenburg
silver, teakwood wengé
33 x 36 x 2cm

Zuiderzeewerken II
necklace, Leguaan
silver, rope, yellow fabric, thread
26 x 24 x 7cm

Zuiderzeewerken II
necklace, Spakenburg
silver
72 x 43 x 5cm

Zuiderzeewerken II
necklace, Spakenburg
rope, thread, clay
70 x 35 x 3cm
/ (1 of 1)
Zuiderzeewerken II
necklace, Spakenburg
rope, teakwood, yellow thread
72 x 36 x 4cm

Zuiderzeewerken II
brooch, Spakenburg 3
teakwood, silver, paint
15 x 14 x 4cm

Zuiderzeewerken II
brooch, Spakenburg 4
teakwood, silver, paint
10 x 11 x 4cm

Zuiderzeewerken II
brooch, Spakenburg 2
teakwood, silver, paint
10 x 14 x 4cm

Zuiderzeewerken II
brooch, Spakenburg 1
teakwood, silver, paint
10 x 14 x 4cm

Zuiderzeewerken II
´Zuiderzeewerken´ is telling about the disappearing traditions in The Netherlands. My previous collection ´Weefsels´ was talking about the traditions in the south of Holland, Zeeland. Zuiderzwerken tells about the North of Holland. Around the Ijsselmeer, previously called the Zuiderzee you still find a lot of small fishermen´s villages. In the past there was a lively culture of fishing for hareng and anchovy. Around 1930 they closed off the Zuiderzee from the Northsea so the water became sweet. Now the last fishermen are disappearing because the eel is dying out too.

´Zuiderzeewerken´ tells about the men and women of the Zuiderzee. Their traditional costumes eg. ´Spakenburg´ a small fishermen´s village is one of the last villages where women still wear the traditional costumes. Part of their clothes is made of chintz. The chintz were imported from India and printed with handcarved printing blocks. Several of my pieces are inspired on the patterns of these chintz. The golden ´earring´ was worn by the fishermen as an insurrance. If they drowned and it was not possible anymore to identify the fisherman they could at least give this person a decent funeral. Other jewellery pieces refer to the materials used by the fishermen such as the ropes, the fenders and the netting. The patterns on the ceramic floats (´Drijvers´) are originating from wooden shoes from the island of Marken. The men carved these wooden shoes for their future brides as a wedding gift.




Pictures Frans Kup (except for "Op hoop van Zegen")


Zuiderzeewerken I
necklace Drijvers
rope, clay
85 x 40 x 10cm

Zuiderzeewerken I
necklace Leguaan
rope
85 x 40 x 10cm

Zuiderzeewerken I
necklace Spakenburg
silver
85 x 50 x 4cm

Zuiderzeewerken I
necklace Ankerketting
90 x 40 x 15cm
copper, paint

Zuiderzeewerken I
necklace Botters
zinc, steel, paint
95 x 30 x 8cm



Weefsels
necklace Halssieraad Rood
wool, ceramic beads, plastic, thread
140 x 50 x 5cm
Weefsels
sample Halssieraad Rood




Weefsels
brooch Broche Groen
zinc, jade, thread, linen
15 x 15 x 2,5cm
Weefsels
detail Broche Groen



Weefsels
necklace K(o)ralen, detail
silver, thread
160 x 25 x 3cm




Weefsels
necklace Braamknoop
silver, electroformed with zinc, wooden beads
90 x 30 x 3cm
Weefsels
detail Braamknoop




Weefsels
necklace Halssieraad Wit
cotton rope, thread
95 x 35 x 9cm
Weefsels
detail Halssieraad Wit



Weefsels
brooch Broche Rood
jade, plastic, thread
12 x 12 x 3cm




Weefsels
necklace Halssieraad Sloten
zinc
140 x 35 x 0,5cm
Weefsels
link Halssieraad Sloten



Weefsels
brooch Broche Bruin
zinc, thread, wool
13 x 9 x 1,5cm


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Weefsels/ Weavings
(graduation Gerrit Rietveld Academy 2006)

“Weefsels” is about more than the material I use and the way I use these materials. It’s also about a train of thoughts, interlacing subject. About where I come from, where I grew up. About engagements, family and history. About how I read and experience things. How I see them and would like to see them.

Recognizable forms have changed into more abstract forms. As it were zoomed in, extremely magnified.

The language I speak is that of jewellery. I look at things with the eyes of a jewellerymaker, into detail. I want the viewer to see through my eyes.

These are my interpretations of traditional costumes and jewellery of Zeeland, a region in the south of the Netherlands where I grew up.





Zeeuwse knopen
necklace Halssieraad Mosterd
zinc, cotton, teakwood
30cm



Zeeuwse knopen
Ring Zeeuwse knopen
silver, cotton thread
6 x 7cm



Zeeuwse knopen
Ring Zeeuwse knopen
silver, cotton thread, wool
6 x 7cm



Zeeuwse knopen
Ring Zeeuwse knopen
silver, zinc, vintage turquiose
6 x 5cm



Zeeuwse knopen
Ring Zeeuwse knopen
silver, zinc, vintage turquiose
6 x 6cm



Zeeuwse knopen
Ring Model Zeeuwse knopen
silver, cotton thread
6 x 6cm
This model has been casted into a 150 grams silver ring

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Zeeuwse Knopen
I grew up in the south of the Netherlands in a region called; Zeeland. With “Zeeuwse knopen”something you could translate as; “knots of Sealand” or “Buttons of Sealand”, I have tried to show my love-hate relationship with this area.

Zeeuwse knopen is the name for a specific sort of jewellery worn with traditional costumes of Zeeland.

Due to the weight of the rings (125 grams) and the heaviness of the filigree -which is normally very fine and has an open structure- the wearer is aware of a burden he/she is carrying. With “halssieraad mosterd”I have tried to question the perception of the word beauty. The dense structure of the cotton, the endless needlework, the rawness of zinc, the odd yellow used in this work intensify this uncomfortable feeling. The necklace is worn very high on the neck like the traditional coral necklaces worn in Zeeland.
“Zeeuwse knopen” has been an impuls for my graduation work “Weefsels/weavings (2006). In which I chose to show a more positive view in my history with the region where I grew up.