Collect 2012 – The Scottish Gallery
Intervista con Christina Jansen, direttore della Scottish Gallery.
Interview with Christina Jansen, Director at The Scottish Gallery.
The Scottish Gallery has been contemporary… since 1842. What do you consider to be “contemporary” in art today?
That’s a really difficult question! We have always developed to survive the times and sometimes it is only when you look back do you realize what marked a moment in time. At the moment contemporary feels like survival, so survival is what I believe is contemporary in art today.
The Scottish Gallery is a reference in the international panorama for ceramics, metalwork, glass and of course jewellery. What are the main characteristics that you look for in an artist that ultimately make you decide to include him/her in your gallery?
I look for quality, integrity, and a sensitive knowledge and understanding of the real world.
Do you think that the role of the gallerist has changed or is changing due to the worldwide economic crisis?
I have to be very sensitive and aware of what is happening economically. I have to manage artist’s expectations and I only take the best work that is available and I only show work that I am completely satisfied with. I am showing less work but higher quality work from low to high prices, it all has to be good with no exception. My office is in a public space, I have to listen to the audience and make sure that I take them out of their world by having work that is rare, work that is beautiful and a gallery space that inspires.
How does the current economic situation affect the contemporary jewellery market? What are your thoughts for the future?
The contemporary jewellery market has been severely affected by the current economic situation. In my opinion based, the avant garde has almost disappeared replaced by much more conservative tastes. Showing international work is much more difficult with fluctuating currencies, the increase in metal prices, transport etc. Recent graduates have little turnover of work which impedes development of their work. There is such a huge amount of gifted established artists that I wonder how anyone manages to compete. However, there are always anniversaries to celebrate and when we sell, we sell good quality, beautiful pieces and I am very lucky to have access to some of the best work available and for that I am very grateful. The gallery will always respond to the changing times and try to be innovative where appropriate and support our stable of gifted artists.
Regarding Collect 2012 I’ve noticed that this year, as far as jewellery is concerned, you’ve chosen to focus on one artist, a solo retrospective exhibition of Jacqueline Ryan. Can you tell me more about the reasons for your choice?
I think that Jacqueline Ryan is an outstanding artist. I felt that I wanted to restrict the focus at Collect to one idea only to create an impact and Jacqueline Ryan’s fine gold work was a natural choice. Being a British Italian based artist places her work in a unique place, her work is neither British or Italian but I see the influence of both cultures. Her work is beautifully engineered, subtle, timeless, honest, natural, warm, architectural and not only is it sensational to look at but it transforms a woman without detracting from the beauty of the person. We have sold her work to private collections and public institutions and I wanted to highlight this artist and I want people to enjoy looking at her work, I think she makes really special work and I want to celebrate her remarkable achievement to date. These may be black times but there is still gold out there and I believe that Jacqueline Ryan’s work has that midas touch.