An original and enigmatic jewellery collection integrates ancient and contemporary. In conversation with designer and jeweller Ofra Shelef
Ofra Shelef jewellery brand was established in London in 1997, and from 2010 is based in Tel Aviv. In her new collection, Protoline, messages are engraved in cuneiform script, that call for harmony, love, peace, and awareness.
Hi Ofra, can you tell us about what stands behind your new collection?
I always look for interesting connections, it was intriguing for me to work with a language that is so primal, a language that was used for communicating in the old world in the middle east. Akkadian is a language that was hammered in cuneiform script. A language that is esthetic and picturesque but also very suitable to engrave in the substance. I choose to use this language to pass messages from the Kundalini yoga, which is part of my world in the last few years as a practitioner and a teacher, messages like: love, true identity, magic, creative energy, infinite pulse, balance.
There is something beautiful in the feeling that only the person that wears the jewellery knows what is written, it is mysterious and intimate at the same time.
I wanted to create a piece that is like a modern talisman, that has a meaning to the wearer and also intriguing in a way that it creates a conversation around it. During the process of work also humourous combinations occurred, like with the ID bracelets, on which, instead of a personal name, I engraved the words “true identity”.
The halved signet ring is vibrating romantic feel, the option that lovers will share it till the time that they reunited. Did we go too far?
The ring offers few options, to split between the fingers, to bring together like a whole -separate object, a playful object. I think it resonates more a feel of freedom and non fixation, but if someone wants to share it, it will be as wonderful.
Finally, is there anyone specific that you would be happy to see wearing a piece from the collection?
Patti Smith, for her power, her sensability, her talent and her truth.
Ofra Shelef studied design and jewellery making in Rome and Tel Aviv. Her jewellery is selling worldwide.
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