C2 – when the name of a fair hall is automatically associated with electrifying innovation and ground-breaking design, it can only be Europe’s largest jewelry show: inhorgenta europe.

Hall C2
Precious stones always have a special place in Michael Zobel’s collection in harmony with his design

For years, Hall C2 has been known as the place where everybody, who’s anybody among international jewelry designers, showcases their work amid newcomers, start-ups, a wide variety of jewelry schools and the next generation of up-and-coming creative artists. C2 – that spells out innovative design, fresh and beguiling ideas and iconoclastic materials that are transformed into jewelry. Georg Spreng is a jewelry designer with an international reputation who is known for having a predilection for large and especially high-quality precious stones and for being a longstanding exhibitor at the Munich-based Design Podium. He puts it this way: “There’s no jewelry show in the world that has such a large number of creative people per square meter like inhorgenta europe. It’s a must for everybody in the jewelry business to visit this melting pot of ideas”.

A red painted silver heart by Drachenfels Design

There’s a multitude of new things to discover and some new currents are definitely surfacing, even though creative jewelry designers are right to resist being categorized in certain trends because jewelry is just too unique.

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The “Prince Ring” by Erich Zimmermann with a green peridot as an eye-catcher

Color

One distinct trend is taking shape in the direction of color. Precious stones and plastics, enamel or leather – color is one of the pre-eminent topics in the 2005 designer jewelry scene. They may be heart-shaped pendants painted bright red as with Drachenfels Design or long chains made of round interchangeable felt tiles as with Michaela Binder. And you can bet your bottom dollar that there are also magnificent precious stones in fantastic colors because both Erich Zimmermann and others like Michael Zobel put them in the focus of their large-format pieces of jewelry.

Multicolored interchangeable felt tiles make Michaela Binder’s jewelry especially variable

Material

The topic of color is associated with the trend to an incredible variety of materials: whether its hides, felt, gold, rubber; plastic, paint, leather, platinum, paper, parchment, silk or stones, there’s hardly a material that seems crazy enough to keep at least one of the jewelry designers from finding their way to it. Using fascinating plastics and foils create entirely new combinations of shapes that otherwise would not have been conceivable. Beate Weiß is a good example of a designer who produces her own little world of colorful bubbles and nets of fluid dental plastic while the jewelry designer Hilde Janich has devised a technique enabling her to work wafer-thin, but extremely tough natural parchment shining in powerful colors into filigree jewelry fabrications. Monika Jakubec creates contrasts radiating with the glow of warmth and coldness composed of density and transparency with its graphically shaped rings where metals and plastics are combined with one another. Not the least of them is Babette Egerland, who has dedicated herself to plastics with reinflatable balloon jewelry made of foils welded together as light as a feather.

Parchment in its most artistic role: Filigree necklaces by Hilde Janich
This makes a heady mixture of antitheses visible and tactile by Monika Jakubec. While the colorful plastic warms up, the neutral-color metal stays cool
Inflatable balloon jewelry by Babette Egerland
Wafer-thin and virtually transparent: The miraculous world of curious shapes made of dental plastic by Beate Weiß

Metal

But it’s not only the wide range of crazy colors, vibrant shapes and curious materials. Elsewhere, they are returning to the original and attractive simplicity of precious metals. These designers are either purists or combine their work with a few neutral-color stones or pearls that are capable of eliciting an enormous calm and dazzling aura out of gold, silver and platinum with plain and simple design and immaculate workmanship The Niessing Jewelry Factory is spotlighting ultra flat bracelets and necklaces forged of thin sheets of precious metal or that flatteringly entwine themselves around the neck or wrist of the woman wearing them Claudia Hoppe’s bangles will also stun you with the sophisticated simplicity of design. The masters of two-dimensional three-dimensionality, Claude and Francoise Chavent, only use gold and silver in combination with one another to work their pristine pin jewelry with mind-boggling effects.

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Simplicity wins: An affectionate bracelet made of fine gold sheeting by Niessing
Exhilarating effects entrance the antitheses of brushed gold and silver. Design: Chavent
These pieces of jewelry by the Berlin-based designer Ursula Gnädinger are voluminous and lively
Oliver Schmidt took a cue from nature when creating his leaf rings forged of 18 karat gold that conclude with one or two leaves
Clear shapes with small creases: Arm jewelry by Inhorgenta’s 2004 innovation prize winner. Claudia Hoppe
The necklace worked from countless entwining eyelets by Dorothea Brill combines the material simplicity with the vivaciousness of its glittering