CELEBRATING THE WINNING PLATINUM DESIGNS FROM ANGLO-AMERICAN’S 17TH ANNUAL PLAT AFRICA JEWELLERY DESIGN COMPETITION
Bangalore, April 2017: Platinum Guild International is proud to present the winning designs of PLAT AFRICA 2016 – a jewelry design competition. Presented by the world’s leading mining conglomerate of the precious metal Anglo American Platinum, in association with Metal Concentrators, the prestigious competition, open to student/ apprentice and professional jewelers in South Africa promotes innovation and technical expertise in the design of platinum jewelry.
The designs that won at PLAT AFRICA 2016 were spectacular and reflected a modern interpretation of ancient philosophies, rituals and stories using new technology as per the theme of the contest – ‘Nuevo Traditions’. The competition has also looked beyond South Africa’s borders to India, the world’s’ fourth-largest platinum jewelry market to offer the winning contestants a chance to be considered for participation in PGI India’s design sourcing process.
Connecting contrast of ancient materials and processes combined with modern technology, recycling and raw construction, Sylvester Louw- Pneuma jewellers (Professional category), Jefta Mtole- Altin jewellers (Student/apprentice category) and Alexandre Vencatasawmy- DUT (Student/apprentice category) were the outstanding winners of their respective categories at the competition.
The designs were created keeping in mind the “post-urbanite” consumer segment, who, as a response to increasingly virtual living, seeks to connect more to their surroundings and favor thoughtful, emotional and spiritual connections. A combination of differentiated design theme, originality, wearability, workmanship and technical excellence were key criteria for evaluation.
The winning designs include beautiful platinum neckpiece, bracelet & rings designed using beads, wood, feathers precious stones with precious platinum and converted into unconventional shapes. Being an extremely strong and dense metal, Platinum is an apt choice to create beautiful and alluring pieces. Each jewelry piece has been weaved with intrigue designs which make it unique and complete. Every designer has crafted the jewelry piece themselves reflecting inspiration as visualized by them. Here are the winning pieces from PLATAFRICA 2016 and the inspiration behind these pieces.
THE SPEAR OF TIME
SYLVESTER LOUW- PNEUMA JEWELLERS (PROFESSIONAL CATEGORY)
“The Inspiration for this piece comes from an old African tradition of slaughtering a goat, to ask the ancestors for protection through the journey of life. Isphandla is the skin cut from the goat’s tail. By wearing this your ancestors can see you and protect you. The Isphandla has been a topic of controversy for years and many youths have found the tradition old, out-dated and unstylish. The mission here was to fuse the controversy of art and the ever-changing trends of jewelry -making to combine them to make a statement and set a new trend while retaining tradition. To achieve this, I was inspired by a famous jewelry bracelet ‘the nail’ which is currently in style and turned it into a spear which is outdated but yet symbolizes protection and then added the goat skin to the piece, to bring it in with controversy.”
WOMEN, BUBBLES & DREAMS
JEFTA MTOLE – ALTIN JEWELLERS (STUDENT/APPRENTICE CATEGORY)
“Human beings are able to live and grow, thanks to the constant effort of the women in our societies. Women still touch us in a way that is real, they touch us physically, emotionally and spiritually, through them we can still dream and live meaningful lives. This platinum pendant design uses two recognizable images- Women and Bubbles as Dreams. The silhouette of a woman represents modern women; The beauty of a woman who is loved; the three strands of her hair represent her independence, love, and spirituality. The image of the bubbles in the round pendant as a whole and pierced out of the background, has been inspired by a blog written by television personality, Laura Hamilton, where she likens a soap bubble with the unique beauty of each person’s life and all our hopes and dreams, sometimes bursting but also constantly regenerating”
THE UNITY RING
ALEXANDRE VENCATASAWMY- DUT (STUDENT/APPRENTICE CATEGORY)
“For the theme “Nuevo Traditions” I tried to incorporate traditional techniques such as punching and inlay into my contemporary pieces of jewelry. The CCTV headquarters building in Beijing, which is not a traditional skyscraper and has a loop with an open center is what inspired me for this platinum /wooden ring. It led to an unconventional shape for a piece of jewelry that could be considered as “Nuevo”. To avoid being predictable I punched the inner sleeve of the ring, so even if the ring is not being worn there will always be details to discover. The form is pretty symmetrical in shape so an inlay has been placed off center to be less conventional. African Blackwood has been chosen for this piece as due to its dark color it is a good contrast, that lets the platinum and its textures pop out.”