Jacqueline Mina | The Golden Touch | Modi Series

01 Apr 2021

Jacqueline Mina is one of the UK’s most significant and respected goldsmiths and her current exhibition The Golden Touch features a number of her signature techniques. The Modi Series created in 2018-19 was inspired in part by looking at the work of Ben Nicholson and Amedeo Modigliani and features 18ct gold with platinum wire fusion-inlay.

Jacqueline Mina | The Golden Touch | Modi Series
Gold & Platinum Brooch I, Modi Series 2, 2018, textured 18ct gold with platinum wire fusion-inlay, H5.5 x W3 cm
Jacqueline Mina | The Golden Touch | Modi Series
Gold & Platinum Brooch III, Modi Series, 2018, textured 18ct gold with platinum wire fusion-inlay, H6.6 x W3cm

The work of Amedeo Modigliani (1884 – 1920) has held a recurring fascination for me ever since, at Art School in the 1960’s, we were encouraged to study what was then considered ‘Modern Art’. The way he was able to stylize figures and heads by employing such apparently simple lines, while still communicating the figurative subjects of his Art, remains a mystery to me. His lines speak of a designer’s approach, much as in the work of Ben Nicholson, particularly in Modigliani’s preparatory sketches for sculptures. I have always been drawn to this kind of reduction in form & line and, without consciously copying it, my own work certainly can be described as inheriting this abstract style.

Jacqueline Mina, London, April 2019
Jacqueline Mina | The Golden Touch | Modi Series
Gold & Platinum Earrings, Modi Series, 2019, 18ct yellow gold, platinum wire fusion-inlay, H6.6 x W1.6 cm
Jacqueline Mina | The Golden Touch | Modi Series
Gold & Platinum Brooch II, Modi Series 2, 2018, textured 18ct gold with platinum wire fusion-inlay, H7 x W1.8 cm

After visiting the 2018 Modigliani exhibition at Tate Modern I decided to embrace my love of the artist’s line, to distill it further and, using my tried & tested technique of gold and platinum fusion-inlay, incorporate it into a new series of brooches & earrings entitled the Modi Series.

Without departing from my regularly used techniques of texturing, folding and outlining to express my own ideas, I have attempted to capture some of the artistry of Modigliani within those pieces in the series that I have produced thus far.

Jacqueline Mina, London, April 2019
Jacqueline Mina | The Golden Touch | Modi Series
Gold & Platinum Earrings, Modi Series, 2019, 18ct yellow gold, platinum wire fusion-inlay, H6.6 x W1.6 cm

Extract from Jacqueline Mina at 75

The perfect age for a jeweller is not one that can be expressed in years; it is perhaps best defined by the attainment of the optimum combination of tacit skill, physical capacity, experience and restless imagination.

Jacqueline Mina at 75 celebrates a jeweller at the height of her powers ready, as she always has been, to embark on the next stage of her artistic and technical development, and the next challenging project. It is a marvellous thing to observe the work of a true master jeweller as it evolves over a creative lifetime. 2017 marks the 60th anniversary of the formal start of Jacqueline Mina’s remarkable journey, when she took up a place to study silversmithing at Hornsey College of Art. Jacqueline has now been making jewellery for five and a half decades. Throughout that time her work has grown seamlessly in skill and eloquence, each new exploration using her innate sensibility to build on hard-won knowledge and technical understanding. It is therefore particularly pleasing that Jacqueline Mina at 75 offers a rare opportunity to see her most recent work within the context of a selection of pieces that have preceded it.

In 2011 Jacqueline wrote, ‘If I let my imagination run free with gold I find the possibilities are endless’. And so, at 75, she remains fired with passion for this wonderful metal, never content to repeat but instead endlessly excited by the prospect of taking technical risks, to see what might happen. As each body of new work reaches what feels to her like its natural culmination, Jacqueline is already anticipating the next adventure. Neither she nor we know where gold might take her next or, indeed, she might take gold. 2017 is also, remarkably, the 175th anniversary of the founding of The Scottish Gallery. It is significant that Christina Jansen and her staff have chosen Jacqueline Mina’s work to stand at the heart of The Gallery’s year-long celebration. Her jewellery crystallises that magical, elusive mix of the timeless and the fresh, the technically superb and the radically innovative, that locates both Gallery and jeweller at the very top of their fields, and has done so throughout their respective histories. - Elizabeth Goring

You can purchase the publication that accompanies Jacqueline Mina's April 2021 exhibition The Golden Touch here

You can view and purchase the publication that accompanied her 2017 exhibition Jacqueline Mina at 75 here.

Jacqueline Mina's April 2021 exhibition The Golden Touch can be viewed here.

Jacqueline Mina | The Golden Touch | Modi Series
Jacqueline Mina in her studio, 2021, photo: Michael Minas

EDUCATION:

1957-62 Hornsey College of Arts and Crafts

1962-65 Royal College of Art

SELECTED PUBLIC COLLECTIONS:

National Museums Scotland, Edinburgh; Leeds Museums and Galleries; The Crafts Council, London; Victoria & Albert Museum, London; The Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths, London; Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art; Museum of Art & Design, New York; Cooper-Hewitt Design Museum, New York; Alice & Louis Koch Collection

SELECTED DISTINCTIONS:

2012 Awarded Officer of the Order of the British Empire for services to art

2000 Winner, Jerwood Applied Arts Prize: Jewellery

1995 Lady Liveryman, The Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths

1985 Freeman of the City of London, The Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths

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