Winners Announced: Amberif Design Award 2018


Amberif Design Award 2018 Announce Winners

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Silvia Bella of Germany, Kairi Sirendi of Estonia and Miron Kutarba of Poland have been announced as the winners of the 2018 edition of the Amberif Design Award, the 22nd International Amber Jewellery Design Competition. The theme of Serendipity encouraged participation from 100 artists who submitted 127 entries.

Amberif Design Award is one of Poland’s most important design competitions of international renown. This year, ADA’s curator Barbara Schmidt of the Academy of Art and Design, Munich, has set the theme of Serendipity to encourage a reflection on how the interplay between nature, technique and intuition can take us far beyond our reason, while accidental observation may occasionally lead to surprising discoveries. The designers got the idea and did not disappoint.

“There are the entries which stand out, those in which the material has been treated with remarkable tenderness and those which make use of new technologies or interesting combinations of amber with other materials, such as metal and synthetic materials,” 
Barbara Schmidt was clearly happy.

The ADA Jury included experts from the world of art, museums and education:  Sophie Hanagarth (France), Dr Petra Hölscher (Germany), Eija Mustonen (Finland) and Marcin Tymiński (Poland). The Jury was chaired by Prof. Stephen Bottomley, a renowned jewellery designer, Head of the School of Jewellery at Birmingham City University. A total of 127 entries were assessed, submitted by 100 artists from 20 countries.  

“It was a marvellous experience to see so many really interesting good designs with amber in the leading role,” 

Prof. Stephen Bottomley summed up, 

"The Jury was in agreement on the selection of the winning pieces. Many discussions and emotions were caused especially by the Main Prize, which seems to hold many secrets. I am very pleased with the Jury’s decision and I believe that the pieces we have selected will inspire not only this generation but future ones as well.”

“The Jury’s verdict is very well thought over, or thoroughly discussed to be more precise,” 

Marcin Tymiński emphasised. 

"All of us were captivated by the Main Prize winning piece which is an inspiration to create contemporary amber jewellery. It transfixed us with its novelty factor and the multitude of possible interpretations. Practically each of us saw something different in it."

Eija Mustonen was of a similar opinion. 
"So many participants and so many entries of varying, good quality, made the choice of the best designs not an easy task; it was preceded by many intense discussions: mainly on the content of the pieces, their artistic quality and the way amber was used."

The three main prizes went to:

Silvia Bellia, Germany / Main PrizePLN 10,000

sponsored by the Mayor of Gdańsk Paweł Adamowicz

The jury found the image submitted mysterious and enigmatic. It raised a great discussion between the Jury that resulted in their being in agreement that it would hopefully inspire future generations to work with this beautiful material and be brave to do many different things. The composition of materials was handled in a sophisticated manner with great skill.

Kairi Sirendi, Estonia / Amber Prize1 kg of amber

sponsored by the International Amber Association

An interesting combination of two organic materials that are held together by a magnetic and irresistible force. Truly a “sweet serendipity” between nature and chemistry.

Miron Kutarba, Poland / Silver Prize1 kg of silver

sponsored by KGHM Polska Miedź SA

This prize provided an alternative perspective for the competition. A well observed, witty and almost kitsch design inspired by a study of everyday popcorn, with amber as the kernel of the idea.

The award ceremony will be held on 23 March at the Gdańsk Shakespeare Theatre during the AMBER LOOK Trends & Styles Amber and Fashion Gala, a side event to the 25 AMBERIF International Fair of Amber, Jewellery and Gemstones.

The Jury decided to award four honourable mentions to emphasise the high quality of the entries. They went to: Carme Roher Casellas (Spain), Andrea Wagner (the Netherlands), Andrzej Boss (Poland), Hanna Kowalska (Poland). 13 pieces were shortlisted for AMBERIF 2018 Exhibitor Directory publication and for the follow-up exhibition.


Rebecca van Rooijen


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