This post marks the start of a new interview series called "Inspired" because there is always a back story to each piece of art or design, and while it may appear clichéd to be asking about inspiration, we are always curious about motivation.
The beauty of inspiration is that it is always so personal, and these pictorial interviews will confirm this. Knowing that no answer can match the simplicity of the question, we ask Alissia Melka-Teichroew:
What inspired the Jointed Jewels collection?
What follows is a response (mostly) in pictures:
"A long time ago when learning a CAD program, we were asked to make a connection and we were going to have it 3D printed. Meaning it would have to be built and work (for us this meant picking a connection and figuring out how to make it work and use the correct tolerances for the 3D printer we were going to be using etc). Instead of working on a connection that clicked or perhaps would slide together etc, I decided to make a ball joint connection. Because the thing about 3D printing was that you could print something inside something else. I didn't need to be moulded etc. So this meant I could make a ball in a socket connection without clicking the ball inside the socket.
Once this connection was printed, I always wanted to use this idea for jewellery as well as for lighting and furniture. Finally in 2008 (5 years after the idea started), I moved forward to work on the jewellery. The lighting and furniture are still in the works."
Alissia sent us images of some of the inspiration for the Jointed Jewels, in no particular order. "...I think they should all be mixed up, since in real life this is not such a linear process."
"... Most important is the cross pollination between being inspired by an industrial process mixed with using this for another type of object - which questions functionality. Meaning I believe aesthetics are a function as well. Something is not only functional when it shines light, can collapse, etc."
Jointed Jewels, a collection of bracelets, necklaces and rings made of selective laser sintered coated nylon, is a "union of new and old, organic and industrial, functional and decorative" where separate elements that usually join together are produced as a whole. The idea was based on ball joints that are more often found in cars and hip replacements. Melka-Teichroew decided to create the ball joint as a single piece that was a ball inside a ball. Each piece of jewellery in the series was made the same way, resembling a complicated assembled item, but produced as a single piece.
The Jointed Jewel movie by Roosmarijn Pallandt made to show the process.