METALLOphone: Bonds (2016)

The 3rd International Biennial of Contemporary Metal Art

When creating, artists often forget that they belong to a large community which brings all the creators together by invisible links. Being in the community inspires, allows to learn and share ideas as well as discover new horizons. To bring artists together to a single event – this was the idea of the contemporary metal biennial “METALLOphone” when it was launched five years ago. Today the biennial unites the global community of metal artists and is the only event dedicated solely for metal art in Lithuania.

So it is unsurprising that the third international contemporary metal art biennial taking place in Vilnius talks about the metal connection. As a unified speech, this material, having mediational characteristics, not only brings together artists from around the world but also has the ability to embody the intangible connection between the artist and the environment through a creative process. Each person sees the world in his own way, describes different events in his own words so the connections embodied in metal in this “METALOphone” reveals authentic, unique stories of the artists.

The works presented at the biennial take visitors aback not only by the variety of shapes but also by unexpected combinations of materials. Here, various metals are combined with organic and synthetic materials, ready-mades, found or recycled items, while the shapes of the creations vary from jewellery works that maintained their functionality to conceptual, small plastic objects. Such a wide variety of metal art, bringing together artists who value a conceptual approach and who work in different areas of the world, reveals the versatility of metal.
This year “METALOphone” generated especially a lot of interest not only in Europe but also in Asia, Australia, North and South America so the event featured 63 artists from 28 countries: Turkey, Romania, Poland, Germany, Greece, Belgium, Japan, USA, Sweden, Denmark, Lithuania, Holland, Taiwan, Colombia, Canada, Estonia, Austria, England, Latvia, Pakistan, South Korea, Israel, Italy, Brazil, Thailand, Finland, Spain, New Zealand.

“METALOphone: Bonds” in 2016 involved a new programme – an online international lecture cycle. During the programme, speakers from various countries and schools presented their environment, share their knowledge and insights into the creation of modern metal art, art trends and the combination of a conceptual approach with special technologies. 

Seminar “Jewelry NL” with Ruudt Peters (Netherlands), jeweler and sculptor, and artists Liesbet Bussche, Gesine Hakkenberg, Chequita Nahar and Ted Noten
Seminar with Vincent Pontillo-Verrastro (USA), artist and Metals and Contemporary Art Jewelry professor at University of Wisconsin-Stout
Seminar “Bonds between Telsiai, Lithuania and jewellery” with Gabrielė Pranevičiūtė (Lithuania), jeweller and the head of Telšiai Gallery of Vilnius Academy of Arts.
  • Seminar “Jewelry Connections in São Paulo, Brazil” with Marina Sheetikoff (Brazil), jewelry artist.
  • Seminar “The (Beginners) Guide to Estonian Jewellery – 10 basic questions around metal” with Ketli Tiitsar (Estonia), jewelry artist.
  • Seminar “Art Jewelry in Sweden” with Miro Sazdic (Sweden), jewellery artist and senior lecturer at department of jewellery “Ädellab” at Konstfack, visual/jewelry artist Rebecca Deans (Sweden) and Dovilė Bernadišiūtė (Lithuania/Sweden) jewellery artist and recent graduate from Konstfack, Jewellery and Corpus.

The project was partly funded by Lithuanian Council for Culture.