Wednesday, 17 October 2012

In Her Own Words - Weibke Goos

Currently, I’m concentrating on designing and producing wearable jewellery - unique pieces as well as small-scale series. My jewellery is characterized by the combination of innovative manufacturing methods, traditional gold work and very old casting techniques. Due to the different manufacturing processes the pieces obtain special surface structures and quite often an archaic charisma.

During my studies at Pforzheim University I have already launched the jewellery brand “Goos Jewellery”. I believe that social justice and the protection of our environment are as important as excellent quality and design. Therefore every piece of jewellery is manufactured from recycled or fair-trade silver, gold and gems. It is my aim to unify timeless and individual design, highest value as well as social and environmental responsibility.

Right after my last year’s graduation I opened the gallery “Goldaffairs” in Karlsruhe. It is the first German gallery for ethical jewellery and sustainable accessories. It is located in the east of Karlsruhe, in close vicinity to the old slaughterhouse. Currently, this area is on the move, there will be studios for artists and designers in the near future. Besides my own works I sell products from international designers and small brands. The accessories I offer are out of recycled materials or vegetable-tanned leather. The jewellery is manufactured from fair-trade precious metals and gems or recycled precious metals.

Trying to establish a business based on a holistic concept of sustainability and social justice is not always easy, but in my eyes it is worth trying in so many ways. In Germany, topics like “ethical jewellery” and “responsible mining” are not as widespread as they are in England, but the public awareness is increasing and the media presence is growing. I experience my customers to be very interested and receptive. Some of them come to my gallery because they already knew about my concept and would like to buy jewellery made of fair-trade gold or silver, others like my design, the personal atmosphere and the products I’m selling.
As I already implied highest quality in design and fabrication, the selection of unique and exceptional products as well as a distinguished customer service are my priorities. Fair-Trade and sustainability are therefore more like a topping that my customers appreciate and that makes my business remarkable.

For me it is more complicated, more expensive and time-consuming to buy fair-trade precious metals and gems. Furthermore, the production of my jewellery is costlier but I hope that this will change in the future. In the meantime, I am convinced it is worth dealing with these aspects even though one must make compromises sometimes.

 Last year, I won the “Heinrich–Blanc Förderpreis” which is awarded every year and honors exceptional academic theses to promote the progress in Baden-Württemberg. I developed an own manufacturing method to create a symbiosis of jewellery and packaging. Both elements interact and therefore are inextricably linked with each other. Every piece of jewellery is formed in its own mold which is, at the same time, the packaging. Thereby every item gains its very special charisma and uniqueness. (mein stein)
In the same year, I competed for the STUDENT DESIGN AWARD for rapid manufacturing and won the second prize. I presented an innovative jewellery concept working with generative design to create rings consisting of very complex organic structures (morphogenetic).

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