Today, GemFind is featuring an incredibly talented fine jewelry designer by the name of Otto Jakob. One of the world’s leading artist-goldsmiths, Jakob has a strong background in art, with self taught skills and techniques as a goldsmith and jeweler. He is known for creating one of a kind sculpted pieces of fine jewelry, in the spirit of great Wunderkammer treasures. These pieces of art are sought after byÂ connoisseursÂ and collectors all across the globe.
It was at the inspired age of seventeen that Otto Jakob began teaching himself design techniques, inspired by the stated artistic drawing power of Etruscan, CelticÂ and Hellenic masterpieces. Through the use of treatises by Pliny Cellini, Jakob learned their complex design execution. He studied painting with Georg Baselitz between 1977 and 1980. From 1980 on, Jakob has focused strictly on jewelry design.
When he first began creating jewelry, Otto Jakob had well known artists and successful art dealers seeking out his designs. One of these quite important art dealers went by the name Hans Neuendorf, who acquired the majority of Jakob’s pieces between the years 1981 and 1986. Otto Jakob has interested collectors in both Europe and The United States. He currently exhibits at theÂ DanielÂ BlauÂ GalleryÂ in Munich,Â ColnaghiÂ in London andÂ atÂ TEFAFÂ in Maastricht.
On bad days, I fear no one will understand my work,â€ť Mr. Jakob said in an interview. â€śBut so far, I have been lucky.
Mr. Jakobâ€™s output defies classification by style or period. A mix of medieval and modern, fantastical design and flawless technique, his jewelry raises ornament to the status of artwork.
Formally trained as an artist, he abandoned that vocation early but still stays closely in touch with the art world. For the past six years, he has been one of the handful of fine jewelers invited to exhibit at the annual European Fine Art Fair, Tefaf, in the Dutch city of Maastricht, an exclusive gathering of the worldâ€™s top art and antique dealers and jewelry makers.
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‘Pietrella Earrings’ by Otto Jakob
Hand with Chameleon Pendant, 2006. Enameled and gold painted hand in 18ct yellow and white gold, with two tiny diamond rings, holding an enameled chameleon. By Otto Jakob. Photo Â© Tamara Imbriani
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