AUTOR is a story imagined and built by passionate people, who inspire through creativity, vision and courage. We want you to discover one of the #peopleofAUTOR and let them fascinate you with their story and their creations: Lucie Houdkova. She is the AUTOR Award winner at Athens Jewelry Week and also the Public Award winner of this edition, which shows us that AUTOR’s choice has the public seal of approval. Lucie’s spectacular jewelry can be seen and tried at ⫸ AUTOR Fair in May 2020 ⫸ Bucharest
Athens Jewelry Week 2019
1. Beyond the awards, what did Athens Jewelry Week bring you?
It was a great opportunity to meet new people and make contacts, not only from the jewelry community. I visited a lot of exhibitions and interesting places. In fact, I have not experienced such a culturally rich week for a long time. What I had neglected all year long in Prague, I made up for in a week in Athens.
2. Your collection of jewelries are diverse, soft, but powerful. You can see that is a lot of work put into them. How do you balance inspiration and technique?
I try to keep them in balance, which is often very difficult. Usually the material that I try to tame is stronger than me and my attempts to shape it don’t work out. There are also however situations where, on the contrary, this results in good work. I often wonder why I don’t choose an easier way instead of still inventing unrealistic ideas. That wouldn’t be fun, nor a challenge that drives me forward.
3. We saw on your portfolio that you play with materials, colors, and shapes. It almost brings memories about childhood, by being so colorful and playful. What are your inspirations? Where is this coming from?
When I invent a new series of jewelry, it is very hard for me to take a piece of paper and start sketching. Ideas usually come by themselves when I experiment with materials. In high school, I studied the field of “Toys”, so a degree of playfulness is reflected in my work. In recent years I have become enchanted by the beauty and diversity of the underwater world. I like to dive and I am fascinated with all the incredibly colorful structures that form the underwater forest of plants and animals. It’s a bottomless treasure trove of new ideas for me.
4. Where do you find beauty? How does beauty and jewelry meet in your work?
It’s hard for me to tell where I am looking for beauty. It can be in nature, in art, in everyday things around us. Something has a beautiful form, something else has a beautiful thought. In my work I try to connect them both. When I create a new piece of jewelry, I always try to make it more beautiful, but beauty can also hide in imperfections and defects. Although my work looks very complicated, I still believe that the greatest beauty is in simplicity.
5. How will you describe the contemporary jewelry environment in Prague, the city where you live and create?
In Prague, or rather in the Czech Republic, there is a quite young audience following contemporary art jewelry. This field has been expanding lately, and public interest is increasing. The creation of the category “Jewelry” in the competition for the best Czech design, “Czech Grand Design”, certainly contributed to raising awareness. This goes hand in hand with organizing more exhibitions and supporting young students. In addition to the Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design in Prague, where jewelry can be studied, a new high school of arts was founded in Pilsen, led by an excellent teacher and jeweler, Petr Vogel.
Find out more about Lucie and her work: www.luciehoudkova.com