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Modernist Jewelry of Art Smith at the DMA


From the Village to Vogue: The Modernist Jewelry of Art Smith

Exhibition of Jewelry Designed by Legendary Mid–20th-Century Artist

Dallas, TX—June 12, 2014— From the Village to Vogue: The Modernist Jewelry of Art Smithexamines the work of jewelry maker Arthur Smith (1917–1982) through a collection acquired by the Brooklyn Museum of Art from the estate of the artist. One of the leading modernist jewelers of the mid-20th century, Smith was inspired by surrealism, biomorphism and primitivism, and a deep awareness of the female form. As a result, his jewelry is dynamic in its size and shape, but remains lightweight and wearable.

The exhibition, on view June 14 through December 7, 2014, features 26 pieces including silver and gold jewelry created by the celebrated African American artist, and more than 30 pieces by his contemporaries, including Frank Rebajes, Elsa Freund, Marion Anderson Noyes and Ed Wiener. Archival material from Smith’s estate—sketches, the original shop sign and period photographs of models wearing the jewelry—enhances the presentation. The jewelry, dating from the late 1940s to the 1970s, includes his most famous pieces: the “Lava” bracelet, or cuff,  which extends over the entire lower arm in undulating and overlapping forms;  the “Patina” necklace, inspired by the mobiles of Alexander Calder; and a massive ring with three semi-precious stones that stretches over three fingers. Accompanying the exhibition will be a presentation of Smith’s tools in the Museum’s Center for Creative Connections on Level 1.

For more information, see the press release http://www.dma.org/press-release/village-vogue-modernist-jewelry-art-smith



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