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We are proud to join Gallery Loupe in presenting Paper as Protection and Gift / Recent Work by Kiff Slemmons. In this exhibition, American artist Kiff Slemmons continues to investigate past jewelry forms through an ongoing exploration of paper as a material. These works address the simultaneous strength and fragility of paper, the historical and cultural significance of the material, and the use of paper and jewelry as a way to both protect and connect.
Paper as Protection and Gift
That paper is ephemeral and yet strong is true.
That paper is the site of poetry,
metaphors for change,
notes of exchange,
is also true.
is a material
to the past
and traditions of preciousness and value
may be unexpectedly true.
that the handmade
in a culture separate from our own,
rolled into beads, the very first form of jewelry
and turned into breastplates
honoring the complicated history of their predecessors
is true and present in this exhibition.
In the context of precariousness
in current culture,
armor for protection and dignity
taps into the humanity of jewelry.
– Kiff Slemmons
An opening reception with Kiff Slemmons in conversation with Helen Drutt was held on Friday, May 3 at 6:30 pm in The Great Room @ The Jewelry Library.
Kiff Slemmons, self-taught in metalsmithing, is an American artist of international repute. Known for her work with non-precious materials, she has collaborated over many years with the artisans of Arte Papel in Oaxaca, Mexico to produce jewelry using indigenous handmade paper. Slemmons holds a Bachelor's Degree from University of Iowa, where she majored in art and French, studying for a year at the Sorbonne in Paris. Her work is included in museum collections at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Boston Museum of Fine Arts, Museum of Art and Design (New York), Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Victoria and Albert Museum (London), and Pinakothek der Moderne (Munich), among others. In 2000, the Palo Alto Art Center in California mounted a retrospective of her work titled The Thought of Things, which travelled to The Contemporary Museum in Hawaii. A traveling exhibition, Re:Pair and Imperfection, originated at the Chicago Cultural Center in 2006, and was shown later at the Philadelphia Art Alliance. In November 2007 Slemmons was interviewed for the Smithsonian’s Archives of American Art. She has been published regularly in American Craft and Metalsmith, as well as in anthologies of American and European jewelry.
Gallery Loupe represents the work of innovative contemporary studio artists. Focusing on established and emerging artists from the U.S. and abroad, the gallery offers the opportunity to see and experience the most experimental and provocative jewelry being created today. It presents an expansive view of what jewelry can be through the use of non-traditional materials and challenging approaches. Gallery Loupe's program of exhibitions and artist conversations offers the chance to explore and understand this important art form. Situated in close proximity to New York City, it allows for cross-disciplinary programming. As part of the creative agenda, the gallery regularly collaborates with other art institutions and venues. Established in 2006, the gallery is surrounded by many excellent shops and restaurants and is a quick walk to The Montclair Art Museum.