ARJE GRIEGST (1938-2016 )
Jewelry designer and scupltor Arje Griegst is well known for his many pieces and unusually extravagant stylization, especially within a culture of artistic austerity. Frequently working with gold, he created large pieces of jewelry with free flowing naturalistic yet abstract shapes that often incorporated gemstones into their designs. His works have been varied from the fountain in the center of Tivoli to the jewelry worn by Queen Margrethe. His works have appeared in numerous museums including the Denmark Design Museum, the National Museum in Stockholm, the Victoria ad Albert Museum in London, and the Metropolitan in New York, and won him several awards including the Bindesboll Medal and the National Arts Foundation lifetime grant.
Unfortunately, for such an artist of fine skill, Arje Griegst remains somewhat obscure. His works are varied and disparate, giving little continuity in artistic theme, and often are one of a kind, fitting between the extremes of beautiful functional sculptural pieces and highly sought one-off jewelry items, both of which leave little chance for widespread exposure. He starting his career by training with Just Andersen, and shortly after, during the height of functionalist Modern Scandinavian design, it was this different approach to design which caught the eye of Anders Holstrup-Pedersen of the Georg Jensen Silversmithy. He sent Arje Griegst to Paris with a number of gemstones and other materials to prepare for the production of a number of ring designs for the company. It was in Paris where he similar artists who had tired of Modernism and had begun to return to the Arts Nouveau movement for inspiration.
Later in life, after he became an professor for the Bezalel Academy of Art and Design in Jerusalem, that he would meet and marry his wife, Irene, and soon after his son, Noam, and his daughter, Lia, were born.
He has designed ceramics, most notably the Conch service set, for Royal Copenhagen as well as glasses for Holmegaard, and has worked with the Georg Jensen Silversmithy since 1965. He also has recently taken first prize for the Copenhagen Goldsmith’s Guild’s competition, "Silver on the Edge".
(Georg Jensen Silversmithy- 77 Artists, 75 Years)