Young Applied Artists 2016

Jewellery artist Märta Mattsson is the 2016 Young Applied Artists. Fascinated by the wonders of nature, she transforms dead animals and insects into jewellery pieces, giving new life to something that would otherwise moulder away.

Märta Mattsson was born in Stockholm in 1982 and studied silversmithing and jewellery design at the Academy of Design and Crafts (HDK) in Gothenburg and the Royal College of Art in London. Examples of her work can be found in various museums and galleries, including Nationalmuseum, Röhsska museet in Gothenburg, Schmuckmuseum in Pforzheim, Germany, and the Museum of Arts and Design (MAD) in New York.

Since 2007, her jewellery has featured in many group and solo exhibitions around the world. This spring alone, her exhibition schedule included Open Space–Mind Maps at Nationalmuseum Design, an art jewellery exhibition at Svenskt Tenn in Stockholm, Not Too Precious at the National Craft Gallery in Kilkenny, Ireland, and a solo exhibition at Thielska Galleriet in Stockholm titled Deadly Beautiful. This summer, she is featured in The Jeweller’s Art at Läckö Castle and in a solo exhibition, Death Occupies the Space Between Us, at Galerie Marzee in Nijmegen, the Netherlands.

“I see the beauty in what others might consider repellent, disgusting even. It’s human nature to be drawn to things we can’t comprehend and things we find rather unpleasant. In my jewellery, I probe this strange sense of attraction and make it accessible to others. I share my curiosity and enable others to see beauty in something not considered beautiful. I transform dead animals and insects into jewellery pieces, giving them new life and a new purpose,” explains Mattsson.

Citation of the jury

“For imaginative work taking diverse historical traditions in art jewellery to new dimensions. Fascinated by the wonders of nature, Märta Mattsson gives new life to something that would otherwise moulder away. Her pieces skillfully hover between seduction and a creeping sense of unease.”

2016 jury members

Rolf Julin, Bengt Julins Fond; Elsebeth Welander-Berggren (chair), Sven-Harrys konstmuseum; Micael Ernstell, Nationalmuseum; Love Jönsson, Röhsska museet; Cilla Robach, Beckmans Designhögskola; Kerstin Wickman, design historian and writer.

The Young Applied Artists award

The Young Applied Artists award was founded by Bengt Julin in 2001. Its purpose is to recognize the work of emerging applied artists under the age of 35 working primarily in Sweden. The award of SEK 100,000 is given out biennially by the board of the Bengt Julin Fund, on the advice of an appointed jury. Past recipients include Ida-Lovisa Rudolfsson (2014), Simon Klenell (2012), Karl Magnus Nilsson (2010), Helena Hörstedt (2008) and Christian-Pontus Andersson (2006).

This year’s award will be presented at a ceremony on 14 November at Nationalmuseum Design in Stockholm. To mark the occasion, a selection of works by Märta Mattsson will be on show in the Project Container at Nationalmuseum Design from 11 November 2016 to 22 January 2017.

Märta Mattson. Photo: Emma Fredriksson.

Märta Mattson. Photo: Emma Fredriksson.

Märta Mattson, Inside beetle. Foto: Märta Mattsson.

Märta Mattson, Inside beetle. Photo: Märta Mattsson.

Märta Mattsson, Wings, foto: Märta Mattsson

Märta Mattsson, Wings. Photo: Märta Mattsson 


Art Library and Museum Archives,
Holmamiralens väg 2,
Skeppsholmen, Stockholm 

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