Lina Christensen: The goldsmith and jewelry designer Lina Christensen is very concerned with balance and responsibility. Balance in her choice of materials and their mutual interplay, as well as between the introvert and the extrovert in the actual work process. Responsibility in the way she thinks the environment should be treated. It all connects in her mind. To create a piece of jewelry is a process that starts in the ground and ends in Lina Christensen’s studio and none of the stations along that way must be left out of consideration.
The earth should be treated with decency. “To work with a line or a certain piece of jewelry is a very introvert process that demands absorption and concentration in periods,” she explains. When that faze is over, she travels into the world to see what meets her there. Her travels are a natural extension of the design process and the destinations never accidental. Her latest journey took her to Greenland to see the mines that supply the gold she uses in her jewelry. It is very important to Lina Christensen that the mines, as she says, are closed off responsibly when they are empty.
“Working with the gold – this magnificent material – unfortunately has a huge shadow side to it,” she says. “How you behave environmentally is extremely important. Many of the materials we use are elements. They are taken directly from the ground – and that has to be done with respect to the particular territory.”
Breaking through the material . When she speaks about the processing of gold, she becomes almost alchemistic. When Lina Christensen was able to afford working in gold instead of silver something happened. It was almost as if the gold took form by itself. “Everybody who works this close to precious metals have a feeling that there is one material closer to their heart – their true nature – than others. To me it is the gold,” she says. There is an unexplainable connection between the designer and the material. For Lina the challenge has been to make the gold seem light and airy, despite its high specific gravity. The fineness and the lightness is precisely the distinctive feature of Lina Christensen’s designs.
The breakthrough in creating her own unique expression came in 1988 while in New York. Ironically, she worked in a completely different media: the painting. As a part of her artistic development Lina Christensen had joined Parsons School of Design and there – bang! – in the brand new, soft media she broke the code. “Working the gold demands the use of tools between ‘you’ and ‘it’,” she says. With the painting it was different. The contact was direct and this experience she brought into her design.
The days of Galerie Tactus, after Lina came back from New York she founded Galerie Tactus. “I saw that there were so many resources back home. We had a lot of very talented jewelry designers, and my idea was to unite them – to make jewelry design elitist.” Tactus became the outmost outlet for Danish design talent and managed to put Denmark on the world map. Later the journey took her to the internationally respected silversmith Georg Jensen as a freelance designer.
Lina Christensen Jewelry A Danish design brand founded on 20 years of successful experience. Lina Christensen’s forte as a designer is to make what you could call urban classics in cohesive collections. Jewelry that at the same time seems so obvious that you think it has always been there.