How Much? is the first in a series of curatorial projects unpacking the perception of value and its relationship to craft practice. Presented by Australian curator and jeweler Alex Darby, the exhibition brings together artists who are thinking differently about contemporary jewelry.
This exhibition aims to illustrate the dilemma of art forms that traverse craft and art practice, questioning whether the functional form of jewelry and its ability to operate independently from an exhibition context makes it cease to be “art". Darby critiques assigned values of commodity materials by adopting an absurd price structure that is divorced from the inherent material value of non-traditional materials in a shout-out to the art market and inflation surrounding other art forms.
Contemporary artists Miriam Simun and HE+HU join Darby to reassess these values by using unexpected materials and forgoing limitations associated with traditional jewelry making practice. This exploration of jewelry as an art form questions the system of value that governs contemporary jewelery making and associated commodities. Doing so in New York City—with its longstanding history of high end jewelry production—adds further dimension to this inquiry.
Darby is an artist and curator whose practice is concerned with the intimate relationship that people have with objects and the way in which we understand materiality based on notions of value. Originally from Sydney, she now lives and works in NYC and holds a BA in Jewelry & Object Design, and an MA in Art History. In addition to her art practice, Alex works for NEW INC, the New Museum’s incubator for arts, technology, and design and is engaged with their diverse community of artists and entrepreneurs.