Anne Koch describes her jewelry as “wearable sculpture,” referring to the careful casting that she executes in designing rings that look like seafood and teeth. Of Dutch descent, but now a long-time New Yorker, Anne Koch has created a “Silver Jewelry” and a “Seafood Jewelry” collection for GREY AREA.
Her Silver Calamaring (made to look like a piece of calamari) and Toof Ring (made to look like the bottom of a molar tooth and pronounced as if you got your “toof” knocked out) are cast in silver as a part of the artist’s “Silver Jewelry” collection. Also a part of this collection, Koch’s Pointer Finger Ring was made to look like what she calls “the universal shape of the future.”
Silver Calamaring and Toof Ring replicate recognizable objects cast in heavy silver and gold, highlighting and preserving otherwise typically unnoticed objects. “I love that my mum has jewelry in her mouth,” Koch says, explaining the inspiration she drew from her mother’s gold-plated molars. By casting a tooth or a piece of calamari, Koch is eternalizing these objects as jewelry.
Koch’s “Seafood Jewelry” consists of casted shrimp and calamari, this time in a rubber resin with realistic colors and textures to create a brooch called Shrimp Pin and a ring also called Calamaring. Koch’s decision to create this collection of marine life jewelry out of vinyl rubber exhibits the artist’s interest in confronting the viewer with a sensory experience through the texture felt in her cast jewelry. “I love feeling, inside and outside. Most people have forgotten how to feel,” Koch explains of her desire to provide seafood (which is typically only seen) to also be felt.
Koch references her prominent interest in both aquatic life and in “playing with food,” (as seen in her current show at the Allegra LaViola gallery) resulting in jewelry pieces such as the Calamaring that invite the viewer to wear a seemingly real piece of calamari around one’s finger as a ring.
Casting natural objects that are not usually seen beyond their role as food exemplifies Koch’s intention of bringing attention to these forms with both satire (in her Shrimp Pin) and reverence for even the bottom of a “toof.” “People eat them, so why not wear them? What’s the difference?”