Märta and Kelly

The artists of "DIAMONDS & DEAD THINGS"

Märta Mattson - Photo Luis Pais
Märta Mattsson was born in Stockholm, Sweden and has studied jewellery art at HDK-School of Design and Crafts in Gothenburg, Hiko Mizuno College of Jewellery 
in Tokyo, Rhode Island School of Design in Providence and at the Royal College of Art in London. She has exhibited her work internationally at galleries and fairs including, Schmuck in Munich, Velvet da Vinci in San Francisco and at Gallery Marzee in Nijmegen.

Someone once told Märta: “You make jewellery for children, not for adults.” Given that she draws inspiration from her childhood experiences of playing with stuffed animals and slugs, her fellow students in Tokyo were right when they described her work as: ‘KimoKawaii’, which is in fact a combination of two words kawaii (cute) and kimoi (disgusting). Märta’s work is based on the tension that exists between attraction and repulsion. She translates her bizarre fantasies into ornament and invites people to marvel over their oddity. 

Kelly McCallum - Photo Luis Pais
Kelly McCallum graduated from the Goldsmithing department at the Royal Collage of Art in summer, 2006: a jeweller’s interest in scale and attention to detail is apparent in both her wearable objects and her sculptural pieces. Her work is influenced by both story-telling and natural history, employing Victorian taxidermy as well as insects, precious metals and other treasures from her personal collection of curiosities. 

She is interested in the stories of how things age, how they decay or are preserved, are forgotten, covered in shrouds of grime, only to be found again and given new meanings by our own sentimentality. Taxidermy seeks to preserve life by celebrating death: it is a strange half-live, a suspension, an illusion. Insects on the other hand, through their lives, destroy this illusion: they feed on death, breaking down, demolishing, creating movement from a silent tableau, forcing change and action.

McCallum’s work juxtaposes and celebrates the interplay of these warring factions, preservation and disintegration. They become the characters in melodramatic scenes of mortal stillness and ever-present decay.


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