Brooch #109, 2018, Anat Aboucaya Grozovski
Updated: Mar 25, 2021
Photos: Hadar Saifan
Brass, sterling silver, clay, pigment, rubber band, mixed media
Anat Aboucaya Grozovski, b. 1959
“My work process over the years is guided by contradictory design-related decisions. A lexicon of terms accompanies the transition from drawing to matter. I create based on an equation of contrasts and ambivalent feelings: excess and minimalism, panoramic landscapes and inner landscape, large and small, flat and three-dimensional, local and universal, trendy and classic, kitsch and essentialism, upper and lower worlds, intimate and public, personal and social.
Over the past year, I have created compositions of “vessels” based on values from the world of jewelry design. My challenge is to preserve the identity of each vessel as an emblematic form, while deconstructing, destroying, building, joining, metalsmithing, sewing, sawing, pottery-making and using various techniques, technologies, and changing materials: clay, metal, cloth, wood, thread and plastic, as well as 3-D printing, readymades, and more.
The 300 items produced thus far in the series maintain the identity of a jug, and are based on a typical system of guidelines for creating jewelry, most notably two critical rules concerning size (12 cm. maximum) and weight. They include brooches, pendants, chokers and objects that currently do not have a function, yet can be transformed into jewelry pieces.
The process of experimentation and exploration fascinates me as a design exercise, especially in the historical and local context. Prof. Nurith Kenaan-Kedar* describes the transformation of such vessels into Israeli attributes, borrowed and appropriated from local Arab culture. The image of the "Maiden and the Jar" – of a young Arab girl bearing a water jar on her shoulder or head – came to be associated with the biblical story of Rebecca and Eliezer by the well. Over time, the female figure disappeared, while the water jar remained and became widely represented in popular art in the early years of Israeli statehood – featured on photographs, greeting cards, posters, decorative objects, houseware items and local souvenirs."
* Nurith Kenaan-Kedar, “To the Fountain, the Maiden and the Jar: A Local and Multicultural Image,” Eretz Israel Museum, Tel Aviv, 2013
On display at the Man and His Work Center, Tel Aviv Biennale of Crafts & Design, MUZA – Eretz Israel Museum, Tel Aviv.