Not Too Precious

Not Too Precious

22 January 2016 – 30 March 2016
view gallery


Not Too Precious22 January 2016 – 30 March 2016

Jewellery by 25 international makers.

Attai Chen, Carina Chitsaz-Shoshtary, Eunmi Chun, Warwick Freeman, Emmeline Hastings, Christel van der Laan, Felieke van der Leest, Sari Liimatta, Märta Mattsson, Jasmin Matzakow, Kazumi Nagano, Shinji Nakaba, Lina Peterson, Zoe Robertson, Michihiro Sato, Mariko Sumioka, Emiko Suo, Tore Svensson, Janna Syvänoja, Mirei Takeuchi, Timothy Information Limited, Terhi Tolvanen, Catherine Truman, Flóra Vági, Heather Woof.

As a special focus for the National Craft Gallery, Ireland, the curators have also selected three of the most exciting graduating Irish jewellers: Emma Cahill, Jaki Coffey and Genevieve Howard, to show alongside the core exhibition.

Not Too Precious explores inspirational work by 25 international jewellers using materials for their expressive potential rather than for their intrinsic value. Radical artist jewellers of the late 1960s and 70s vigorously rejected the idea that jewellery should be considered ‘precious’ simply because of the materials of which it was made. Today, the use of a huge variety of materials in jewellery is far more accepted, but economic pressures are putting that freedom of artistic expression at potential risk as people revert to traditionally ‘valuable’ materials for ‘safety’. Not Too Precious challenges preconceptions about ‘non-precious’ materials by encouraging us to consider ‘accrued value': what talented makers bring to their work through their ideas and skill.
The selected artists, who currently work in the UK, Europe, Japan, Australia and New Zealand, create innovative, skilfully-made jewellery that is insightful and culturally resonant. Sometimes poignant, sometimes witty, their work communicates at many levels. It is above all honest and – for want of a better term – not too precious.

Not Too Precious – a film by Shannon Tofts
Local people were invited to wear and respond to items of jewellery made by some of the makers whose work is included in Not Too Precious.

Not Too Precious – a film by Ellie Jones-Hughes

Education & Outreach

CURATOR’S TALK Fri 22 Jan, 6pm

Gregory Parsons in conversation with guests


Post Primary CPD workshop in print –making with Caroline Ryan, €12

More info here

DRAWING AS RESEARCH Wed 17 Feb, Wed 16 March, 10.30am -12.30pm

Explore drawing as a tool for developing creative ideas with Jewellery designer/maker Inga Reed. Workshop fee €5, student €3. More details

FAMILY DAY: ANIMAL ALCHEMY Sat 13 Feb 10.30am & 12 noon & Teen workshop 2.30pm

Transform toy animals into jewellery, workshop inspired by Felieke van der Leest amazing animal creations. More information here


Advanced Style examines the lives of seven unique New Yorkers whose eclectic personal style and vital spirit have guided their approach to aging. More details

INTERNATIONAL WOMENS DAY WORKSHOP Tues 8 March, 10.30- 1pm & 6 - 8.30pm

Creative Engagement with Caroline Schofield

CONTEMPORARY JEWELLERY SEMINAR Fri 11 March, 10.30am - 4.30pm

Parade Tower, Kilkenny Castle. Exploring the practices of some of the artist-makers in Not Too Precious, identifying the thinking behind their work and opening up discussion around themes raised in the exhibition.

More info here

JEWELLERY MASTERCLASSES Sat 12 March, 10am - 4.30pm

Workshops with international jewellery artist-makers Felieke van der Leest and Zoe Robertson for jewellery designers and makers.

More info here

FAMILY DAY: BOOK BADGES Sat 26 March, 10.30 & 12noon & Teen workshop 2.30pm

Jewellery workshop using books inspired by Flóra Vági work. More info here

SCHOOLS TOUR & ACTIVITY Tues- Fri 10am & 12 noon

Exhibition guided talk and hands on design activity

ENQUIRIES & BOOKING For more information

Email or call 056 7796151


Special lunchtime exhibition tour for the Adult Learners Festival - call or email to book