07 May 2015

Israeli Design.

Text: Jessica Sicking, Susanne Heinlein

In form 259 we explore the design in a country that is mainly present in the media because of its political conflicts: Israel. At the same time it has to offer a vibrant and multifaceted design scene, at whose protagonists we took a closer look. You can find more portraits of Israeli designers and studios both in form 259 and form Dossiers.



Lena Tirosh’s designs are dominated by simplicity and the interaction of the forms she uses in her jewellery – furthermore, the use of rubber creates a very recognisable style. Her studies in Tel Aviv and London in jewellery design and history of art support her in including interesting observations of the cultural context she lives and works in.


Studio: Minimaliti

Website: minimaliti.com

Year of foundation: 2010

Employees: 1

Fields of work: jewellery design

Clients: private customers and leading designer shops like Rina Zin, Tema, Myki, Gusta, Kav, etc.



In your opinion, what is special about design in Israel?


We have a very vibrant design scene in Israel. Many talented people graduate every year from local design schools. Israel is a small country where designers easily get to know each other and are aware of the creative work that has been done here. As a result the designers collaborate with each other and by doing so intensify their professional experiences and keep a flow of exchanging ideas. Since Israel is a cultural melting pot, you get very interesting results when different designers bring their unique background and tradition into their work.



What characterises your work respectively your design and style?


I think that soft minimalism describes my design approach well. On the one hand, my work tends to be geometrical, structural and monochromatic, but on the other hand, it doesn’t have a harsh and sterile feeling. In my design process I am constantly searching for the right form and I like to use the same shape multiple times in one piece of jewellery. Through experience I learned that using a one colour material requires special attention to form and proportion. Sometimes, in order to increase the contrast in my jewellery design I combine rubber with metal. In a way, this brings some colour into my work.


Which role do you think cultural influences play in the domain of jewellery design?


It’s well known that cultural context plays an important role in artists’ and designers’ work. In the era of information and technology it is interesting to discover how we interact with knowledge and images that are not part of our culture. Local is mixed with global and similar design approaches can be found in distant parts of the globe despite different cultural contexts of the designers. However, the local cultural ground and the artistic respond to it still play a vital role in the design process.



On what traditions do you fall back with your designs?


I find a great interest in abstract forms and there are many great artists for whom making a form is a focal point of their work. One such example I am really interested in is Richard Serra’s ideas of form making and his special approach to raw form and material. Lately I was amazed by the impressive installations made by the Finish sculptor Kaarina Kaikkonen who uses clothes to make enormous emotional sculptures and installations. As for jewellery artists, I really enjoy the beautiful jewellery pieces of Marina Stanimirovic, Hermann Jünger, Myung Urso, just to name a few. I also find a great interest in Japanese arts and aesthetics and refer to them constantly in my own work.


Where do you find the inspiration for your designs?


I think that fashion is one of the most important sources for my flow of ideas. Yohji YamamotoComme des GarçonsAnn DemeulemeesterRick OwensDries van NotenBoris Bidjan Saberi and many other fashion designers catch my interest over and over again. I also find that modern architecture is a stimulating resource for me. Sometimes the inspiration comes from the setup of my working table; the materials that left untouched yesterday can start an inspiring new thinking direction.



In your jewellery you use a lot of rubber. What is the reason for your fascination with this material?


I like rubber. It is a flexible material and it’s easy to manipulate. It is monochromatic and has great appearance. Rubber is also a surprising and quite unusual material in the jewellery industry. I also like paper artworks and sometimes working with rubber reminds me of working with paper; I cut pieces of rubber that seem like shapes cut of a sheet of paper or look like a patch of ink that spreads on the paper. I am working with a few kinds of industrial rubber. For some designs I use thinner and for others thicker material, depending on the design requirements of the jewellery piece. All the kinds of rubber I work with are a common material in local building and agriculture industries. Sometimes the rubber I work with could be mistaken for leather. By working with rubber and not with leather I am helping a bit to keep animals safe.



How do you sell your jewellery?


My jewellery is sold in a few fine fashion boutiques. I am now in a process of building an online shop. Meanwhile it’s possible to make an order by mail or through the website.


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