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  • Place of origin:

    Netherlands (made)

  • Date:

    2002 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    van Kouswijk, Manon (designed and made by)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Soap with a string of pearls

  • Credit Line:

    The Louise Klapisch Collection, given by Suzanne Selvi

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This piece continued a theme explored by Manon van Kouswijk seven years earlier in her graduation project at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy, Amsterdam. The original project took the classic form of the pearl necklace, with what she perceived as its ‘rigid and aloof character’, and subverted it in a variety of ways: she produced a triple strand necklace of just the knotted cord, spaced as though for pearls of graduating size; and she produced a very similar piece to this one - a ‘transparent bar of soap, containing a strand of pearls that slowly comes out the more the soap has been used up’. As she has explained, ‘The necklace is born from the soap like a pearl from a shell’. (Klimt 02 website. Lecture 2006)

This is one of forty-five pieces of jewellery given to the V&A from the collection of the late Louise Klapisch.

Physical description

A block of yellow translucent soap, molded with a necklace of knotted pearls curled within. The soap has been wrapped with a thin film of clear plastic, secured at the back with a clear sticky disc. The white card box is hand-made, with a photocopied sleeve around the middle patterned with an image of the soap, lather and pearls.

Place of Origin

Netherlands (made)


2002 (made)


van Kouswijk, Manon (designed and made by)

Materials and Techniques

Soap with a string of pearls

Marks and inscriptions

manon / 2002 / 22/50
in pencil on the inside of the box


Height: 101 mm box, Width: 65 mm box, Depth: 36 mm box

Descriptive line

Pearls set within a block of soap with white cardboard soap box, designed and made by Manon van Kouswijk, Netherlands, 2002


Pearls; Card; Soap


Jewellery; Metalwork


Metalwork Collection

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