Past exhibitions

STRICTLY PRIVATE- Asger Jorn's Jewellery

18 AUGUST - 21 October 2018

Museum Jorn presents the exhibition "STRICTLY PRIVATE - Asger Jorn’s Jewellery" which reveals a hitherto unknown side of Asger Jorn, featuring over 25 pieces of jewellery which he created and gave to the women in his life.

A neglected and, to most people, unknown side of Jorn’s oeuvre comprises the very personal pieces of jewellery which he himself made, designed and had made for the women in his life; three wives, daughters, sisters and girlfriends. Unlike many contemporary artists Jorn did not produce entire series of jewellery intended for sale; he put his heart into the making and giving of each individual piece. Intimacy, separation and strife are the themes and driving forces in Jorn’s jewellery production.

After years of work Museum Jorn has succeeded in bringing together the great majority amounting to more than 25 pieces of silver, copper and ceramic jewellery.

Starting in the early years in Paris in the 1930s, Jorn created a wide range of wholly original and personal pieces, often unlike any other kind of jewellery. His inspiration came from a variety of sources: impressions from the lively artistic circles in the 30s that boasted figures such as Miró, Picasso, Léger and Paul Klee. He also drew inspiration from the stylised expression of ritual masks and, finally, from the more symbolic and erotically charged imagery of surrealism. Gradually, using strong colours as a key element, Jorn also achieved artistic emancipation in his jewellery; and the ‘rawness’ of the pieces is clear evidence of their having been shaped by human hands.

Several of the pieces can be seen as specific comments on Jorn’s current circumstances, such as new-found love, break-ups, pregnancy and birth, just as some of them foreshadow coming farewells.

Most of the pieces that Jorn created have been successfully tracked down and can now be displayed for the first time. The exhibition was only made possible because of generous loans from a great number of private lenders.

The exhibition is curated by museum director Jacob Thage, who in the accompanying catalogue examines the biographical context of the various pieces of jewellery and Jorn’s circumstances at the time of their creation, while also contextualising them within the historical framework of jewellery design.


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