Monday, February 6, 2012

Retrospective of Margaret De Patta

Most of the time this blog is about
current designers and their work
but we all got here, knowingly or not,
by following in the footsteps of our predecessors.

 It's easy to think of the history of art jewelry
 merely as dusty old photos and vague, irrelevant facts,
yet I find it enjoyable to learn about
 the pioneers and trailblazers who came before us;
 it helps me to connect the dots
between what came before and what we're doing now.

So in the spirit of learning and exploration
this post is about an exhibition at
The Oakland Museum of California (OMCA)
that takes a retrospective look at
 the legendary work of metalsmith Margaret De Patta.

"Space-Light-Structure: The Jewelry of Margaret De Patta,"
will run from February 3 until May 13, 2012.

Curated for significance and quality
this exhibit showcases over 60 pieces from 1930 - 1960.

As a leader in the American Modernist Jewelry movement,
 Margaret De Patta (1903 - 1964)
 was a visionary in the use of simplicity in line
and structure in jewelry. Her vision and work
shaped the role of the contemporary art jeweler.

This particular exhibition includes not only
more than 60 examples of De Patta’s work but
also archival materials that shed
light on her personal life,
her business “Designs Contemporary,” her point of view
 of the then-current trends in jewelry,
and the sketches and experimental pieces
she developed on the way to creating her iconic work.

This is an opportunity to view
a collection that acknowledges
and respects pivotal work created
by someone who is not a household name.

For an enlightening article about De Patta's life
visit this link.
For additional info and images of the work in this
exhibition see the OMCA website.


  1. I agree with your opinions about the pioneers of the jewelry world. This was a nice post and the links you gave were really informative. It's a nice blog.

  2. Thank you for your comment. Glad you enjoy the blog!


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