Brooch thumbnail 1
Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
Jewellery, Rooms 91, The William and Judith Bollinger Gallery

Brooch

ca. 1970 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

In the 1960s jewellery developed an abstract, sculptural character, with a wide range of visual effects. The traditionally polished surface of gold was no longer fashionable, and instead jewellers played with flame and heat to create new textures and surface finishes.

Minerals and gemstones were integrated in unique and often asymmetrical cuts. Inexpensive materials were combined with precious metals. The value of a piece of jewellery lay in the imagination of the creator rather than the materials used.

Arthur King was self-taught and first learnt to make jewellery during the Second World War. When he was in the United States Navy he experimented with scrap metal. Following the war he lived and worked in Greenwich Village in New York, the home of avantgarde artists with whom he worked and who were nurtured by the modernist movements. He later opened his own gallery, followed by galleries in London, Paris, Miami and Cuba.

His jewellery has an element of spontaneity influenced by the abstract painting of the sixties. King liked the irregularity of uncut or unpolished stones, and his settings were formed by moulding the gold around the edges.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Gold and watermelon tourmalines
Brief Description
Brooch by Arthur King, gold and watermelon tourmalines, USA about 1970
Physical Description
Large brooch of textured gold openwork, set with cross-sections of tourmaline crystal of pink edged with green.
Dimensions
  • Height: 10.8cm
  • Width: 6cm
measured as pinned
Marks and Inscriptions
unmarked
Credit line
Given by Joan Hurst through Art Fund
Summary
In the 1960s jewellery developed an abstract, sculptural character, with a wide range of visual effects. The traditionally polished surface of gold was no longer fashionable, and instead jewellers played with flame and heat to create new textures and surface finishes.



Minerals and gemstones were integrated in unique and often asymmetrical cuts. Inexpensive materials were combined with precious metals. The value of a piece of jewellery lay in the imagination of the creator rather than the materials used.



Arthur King was self-taught and first learnt to make jewellery during the Second World War. When he was in the United States Navy he experimented with scrap metal. Following the war he lived and worked in Greenwich Village in New York, the home of avantgarde artists with whom he worked and who were nurtured by the modernist movements. He later opened his own gallery, followed by galleries in London, Paris, Miami and Cuba.



His jewellery has an element of spontaneity influenced by the abstract painting of the sixties. King liked the irregularity of uncut or unpolished stones, and his settings were formed by moulding the gold around the edges.
Collection
Accession Number
M.21-2006

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record createdJanuary 9, 2008
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