We are very inspired by LTAF ORIGIN. A design and craft research project by Jorinde Meline Barke, creator of label J-M-B JEWELRY, and Frank Michels, co-initiator at the great Berlin-based industrial design studio GECKELER MICHELS. The outcome of the project is a set of four different jewelry pieces implemented in an ancient indian lost-wax casting technique called Dhokra. During preliminary research, anthropological literature led to Dr. Jaidev Baghels’ workshop in Kondagaon — in the city of Chhattisgarh, India — a renowned hotspot for Dhokra. The jewelry pieces were crafted on site under Frank Michels’ assistance with both primitive and thoroughly fascinating means. Dr. Jaidev Baghels’ son Buphendra Baghel played a decisive role with leading the making and his team of skilled workers. The seemingly simple process turned out to be a complex and almost alchemistic affair, reminiscent of the Bronze Age’s enormous power of technical and social revolution. Into operation came materials such as sulfur yellow beeswax and black industrial paraffin way, river bed mudd, cow dung and earth from termite’s nests. Remains from used brass vessels were being recycled, and two hens were sacrificed in order to arouse a succesful casting operation.

The local culture, its rites and rhythms are founding the base for a process which becomes visible within this collection and give them their own character through charming imperfections and a naive bulkiness. From its formal point of view, LTAF ORIGIN is the result of a common examination with a formal theme, which appears as one of the oldest in the history of jewelry – two threaded strings interlacing each other, forming a torque. Looking further in history, we can find this theme amongst others in ancient Greece’s architecture and ornaments, as well as most folk cultures has plait hair styles in common.

Jorinde Meline Barke studied fashion design at the Berlin University of the Arts and in Paris, from which she graduated in 2011. During her studies she realized that her way of thinking and doing research has always been more related to objects or products, their distinct shape or materiality, that is, than to clothing. It took her all the years of studying to realize that she has more passion for resting objects. Time and time again, Jorinde integrated accessories into her fashion collections, only to realize that the accessories themselves deserve her undivided attention.

In addition to her jewelry label, Jorinde collects her everyday inspirations online at J/M/B Journal.

The video was produced and edited by Frank Michels himself, under edit supervision of Elisa Purfurst.

Still-photography of the jewelry by Giulia Munari.

For more information on the inspirational project see here.