The Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture (FADA) at the University of Johannesburg (UJ) hosted the Thuthuka Jewellery Awards Exhibition on Thursday 28 February at the FADA gallery, located on the UJ Bunting Road Campus in Auckland Park.
The annual competition is supported by a partnership between the Department of Arts and Culture and the Thuthuka Jewellery Development Programme.
Students from the UJ Department of Jewellery Design and Manufacture participated in the event.
The exhibition presented jewellery designed by students from community jewellery schools and universities across the country, in particular students from North West, the Free State, Kwazulu Natal and Western Cape, as well as an institution working with a hearing-impaired group.
A total of 120 pieces were nominated for the 2016/2017 Awards, judged by an independent seven-member committee comprising of veteran industry figures, designers and connoisseurs of jewellery, and sponsors.
The 2016/2017 Thuthuka Jewellery Awards challenged students to go beyond borders. This year the brief, Geometry Redefined, was to reinterpret and redefine basic geometric shapes: the cube, prism, cylinder and sphere. Over and above that, the students had an additional challenge- to incorporating a found object and some colour into their design.
This year’s Award ceremony was sponsored by the Department of Arts & Culture (Mzanzi division) and the University of Johannesburg.
Professor Federico Freschi, Dean at FADA, delivered a welcome speech.
The awards were presented by Thuthuka Jewellery Project Director Carola Ross and handed over by Lawrence Mamabola,from Browns Diamond store.
According to Ms Carola Ross, Founder and Director of the Thuthuka Jewellery Development Programme “Developing and encouraging the extraordinary talent of our youth is the most gratifying experience for me. I cannot think of any other project I would rather be involved in. I salute both the students and our generous sponsors for their commitment to creativity and excellence”.
Browns Diamond Store contributed silver as prizes. Metcon contributed silver with which the students were able to make their jewellery pieces. Cash prizes were donated by members of the jewellery industry. The most popular sponsor, Converse, gave each of the 15 category winners a pair of Converse sneakers.
The overall winner in the Excellence Award category was Lincoln Mokoena from the Erkhurhuleni Jewellery Project. The winner in the Most outstanding Student Jewellery Piece category was Zeenat Adams from the Durban University of Technology.
The New Talent Award was won by Thabo Mapota from the Durban University of Technology.
The Emerging Designer Award was won by Mercia Beukes from Ekurhuleni Jewellery Project.
The Inspired ideas Award was won by Nadine Oehley Motheo from TVET College Free State.
The Innovation Award was won by Mandisa Nkabinde from Durban University of Technology
The Great Potential Award was won by Chante Mulder from Free State.
The Achievement Prize Award was won by Thembakazi Sibeko from the University of Johannesburg.