Lecture Series Announced for Out of this World! Jewelry in the Space Age

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It has been announced that two lectures will take place in June in conjunction with the exhibition “Out of this World! Jewelry in the Space Age” currently at The Forbes Galleries, New York City through September 7, 2013.

On Wednesday, June 5 at 4 p.m., gem artist John Hatlleberg will speak on “Using Unusual Materials in Art Jewelry”. Three of John’s works are on view in the exhibition including “The Kitchen Sink Ring” which is set with pallasites—peridot which is found in meteorites, “The Flower Painting” which is set with moldavite, an unusual form of tektite (glass formed when a meteor hits the earth due to extreme heat) and “The Meteorite Mirror”, a highly polished slab of Gibeon meteorite.

John Hatleberg is a New York-based conceptual gem artist recognized for the diversity of his work with jewels. He is also the world authority on creating exact replicas of famous diamonds including The Hope Diamond.

On Monday, May 17 at 2 p.m., best-selling author Lily Koppel will speak on her about to be released book “The Astronaut’s Wives Club” and will follow the lecture with a book signing. The book will follow the spouses of men in the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo programs, who lived in a Houston neighborhood and became friends and confidantes dealing with the unexpected fame and issues of being married to the most famous of the astronauts.

She is known for her book, The Red Leather Diary: Reclaiming a Life Through the Pages of a Lost Journal, which is about her discovery of a young woman’s diary, kept in New York in the 1930s, and its return to Florence Wolfson Howitt, its owner, at age 90. The diary was recovered from a steamer trunk found in a dumpster outside of Koppel's apartment building on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. The non-fiction book is based on Koppel's New York Times City section cover story.

The lectures are free but a reservation is required at ekarlin(at)usa.(dot)net or (914) 286-7685. The exhibition will open for viewing before the lecture on June 5 and before and after the lecture on June 17. There is no admission charge. The Forbes Galleries is located at 60 Fifth Avenue at 12th Street.


The inherent beauty of science and space is explored within the context of one of the world’s oldest traditions, jewelry-making, and its connection to our cultural heritage. Curated by Elyse Zorn Karlin, co-director of ASJRA (The Association for the Study of Jewelry and Related Arts, LLC), Out of this World! Jewelry in the Space Age features pieces from over 75 designers and lenders.

Covering a variety of space-related themes through the context of materials and design, the exhibit also includes vintage memorabilia and art objects relating to space. Jewelry with space motifs from the Georgian period through contemporary work is on display, as well as jewelry made from materials that come from outer space, such as: tektite, meteorite, pallasite, moldavite and moissanite. One of the exhibition highlights is Van Cleef and Arpels’ Tampa Necklace, featuring detachable space-themed component parts, from a private collection. Additionally, the Lunar Landing Pendant by Van Cleef and Arpels will be on view, which was made to commemorate the first walk in space. Sputnik, Halley’s Comet, moon, star and planet-themed jewelry will also be seen, with abundant examples in both fine and costume jewelry.

The inclusion of an 18K gold Lunar Landing Module replica created by Cartier, designed to celebrate the first walk by man on the moon, is another treat viewers can look forward to. Three of them were created for the astronauts that flew on the Apollo 11 mission and were gifts from Le Figaro newspaper. The one in this exhibition was given to astronaut Michael Collins. There is also a unique watch on display made for the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, which tells time in Mars time.

Jewelry that has been flown in outer space is also featured at The Forbes Galleries. Ed White II’s West Point ring, worn in space, will be donated to West Point after the exhibition ends. The first man to walk in space, Ed White II died tragically in the Apollo I fire. Jewelry worn and flown in space by astronaut Cady Coleman will also be on view. Coleman has flown in two space missions, which includes spending 159 days on the International Space Station as a member of Expedition 27; she also served as the Chief of Robotics for the Astronaut Office.

On loan from Beads of Courage, are ‘flown in space’ beads. This organization is dedicated to providing programs and support for children coping with serious, life-threatening illnesses. Beads of Courage commissions bead artists to create encouraging bead mementos for (remove the) young patients. A symbol of courage given to children fighting cancer, these beads—which have been flown in space—represent taking hold of the courage one has and moving forward to face the unknown. The beads have been flown on several shuttle missions.

Donald Claflin’s Man in the Moon Clip Earrings for Tiffany & Co.which once belonged to Gloria Vanderbilt, as well as Bjorn Weckstrom’s “Princess Leia Necklace”, so named because Carrie Fisher wore the same one in the awards ceremony scene in the Star Wars Espisode IV: A New Hope, are not to be missed. Additionally, jewelry fashioned from materials created for the space race are featured, including jewelry made of: polymer, nitinol, dichroic glass, titanium and fiber optic glass.

A limited edition 52-page exhibition catalog is available for purchase by sending a check for $35 + $5 postage to Linda Pierro, Flint Mine Press, Leonia, NJ, 07605. Group tours can also be arranged by emailing ekarlin(at)usa(dot)net. For press inquiries regarding Out of This World! Jewelry in the Space Age, contact Olga Gonzalez at info(at)pietrapr(dot)com.

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Olga Gonzalez
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