Even as a young child, she was attracted to jewellery as a craft, letting curiosity drive her forward
Few people know their craft as well as Josephine Bergsøe, who has run her eponymous jewelry line since 1989. A cancer survivor and mother of two, her life has not been without its complications. But for the Copenhagen-based artist,
a Zen-like relationship with her art, a voracious curiosity and an amazing team are the stuff artistic originality is made of. Handcrafted and unique, her creations are abstractions of the world that she truly enjoys exploring.
Josephine Bergsøe: "Copies of nature can never be complete. If you look at that flower over there, it is perfect, and I can never make anything as refined as that flower. I can make an abstraction of it."
Did you always know you wanted to be a goldsmith?
Yes, I’ve always known. Ever since I was a child. I went to a very creative grammar school, and you could always find me in one of their workshops, melting glass. In that way, melting and forming is something I've always been preoccupied with. I would melt tin and do enamel and stuff like that. I was lucky to find an apprenticeship straight after high school. I was 18, so it’s always been what I wanted to do.
And then you started your own company right after your apprenticeship?
I started out within the same year that I finished. I still remember my first customer. It was not about the money, but about the fact that someone, a real human being, wanted to purchase something that I had created. It was always my ambition to tell stories through my jewelry, to arouse curiosity. I believe that to be the most essential driving force in human beings: our curiosity. When we’re curious; we’re alive. The moment our senses are satisfied, we get lazy and bored. Curiosity drives us forward; it creates progress. That is the primary reason that I’ve never wanted to use molds. I’m spoiled in that way, but I lose interest if everything is identical. It needs just a little bit of crookedness to catch the eye. It doesn’t even need to be immediately evident to us; you could call it a non-detectable crookedness. Optically, it is even, but your eye gets caught somewhere, right there.
Some sort of breaking point…
Something that keeps you hanging for just another moment.