This necklace is inspired by the painting called "Melancholy" by Lucas Cranach the Elder; the painting is part of the National Gallery of Denmark collection.
We fell in love with the symbolism of this painting, somehow clear to understand but also full of subtexts and mysterious small details.
It seems the painter represented melancholy as a feeling of quiet longing with a twisted and dark side referencing to both pleasure and laziness. To the modern eye this is like the picture of some kind of decadent glamour and therefore the perfect inspiration to create a fashion accessory!
We worked with 3 iconic geometric shapes depicted by Cranach: a sphere, a circle and a stick. We incorporated these 3 shapes in a design with the goal to have a full necklace made in "strong and flexible plastic" taking advantage of the "interlocking" possibilities of the 3d printing process offered by Shapeways. We wanted to create a complete necklace that can be printed as a single object and do not require further assembling.
The three cupids in the painting are focused on trying to pass a sphere through a hoop using sticks, apparently failing at doing so. We wanted our design to incorporate this "game" while symbolically completing the task: to wear the necklace you have to physically put the sphere inside the hoop.
Wearing this necklace you celebrate melancholy but you also overcome the darker aspects of it: the sphere pass through the hoop freeing the characters from their hypnotic stasis!
This necklace is the winner of the SMK / Shapeways contest and is on display in the National Gallery of Denmark foyer from 26/10/2017 to 31/12/2017
Read more about this contest at the following links: