KONZUK aspires to create jewelry that is more wearable architecture than simple accessory.
The collections are inspired by designer Karen Konzuk’s personal observations of architecture and sculpture; notably the work of Donald Judd and Richard Serra. Minimal form, unique surface texture, and unorthodox materials each define the modernist aesthetic of KONZUK jewelry.
Each design is hand crafted, for both women and men, as an expression of individual style. Unconventional materials, such as Konzuk’s signature use of concrete and stainless steel, are shaped and refined with the intent of shifting traditional perceptions of jewelry.
KONZUK jewelry appeals to design-centric audiences around the world. Collaborations include Sir Paul Smith’s flagship stores in New York and Los Angeles. In 2014, it was awarded an international design awards for its innovative Orbis line; and in 2016, Schwinn, Germany, will begin producing its unique line of concrete hardware.
“My goal is for others to share an appreciation for the beauty and intrigue of industrial materials in jewelry design.” – Karen Konzuk
Karen Konzuk aspires to create jewelry that is more wearable architecture than simple accessory. A graduate of the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, Karen earned a BFA with a major in Jewelry Design and a minor in Art History, and then introduced the KONZUK line shortly after graduation.
Although Karen’s formal education focused heavily on working with traditional precious metals, the designer has always shied away from mainstream expectations. Karen began to experiment with stainless steel shortly after completing her studies. While the unorthodox material inspired her, its use required that she retrain herself since standard jewelry making rarely calls for stainless steel. The properties of this metal call for an understanding of unusual tools and manufacturing methods.
Through trial and error, Karen persevered to create a line that was unlike anything her peers and mentors were creating. Her diligence resulted in a collection of pieces that reflected the designer’s keen interest in industrial design and architecture. Through a studied use of clean lines and an unwavering commitment to a minimalist aesthetic, Karen has evolved KONZUK into an internationally renowned modern line of jewelry for the contemporary man and woman.
Karen draws inspiration from some unlikely places. A trip to the Contemporary Art Museum in Montreal led to the Concrete Collection, with inspiration also coming from St. Mary’s Cathedral in San Francisco. While a visit to Marfa, Texas to view Donald Judd’s works inspired the Vent Collection.
Some of Karen’s notable achievements include select pieces featured at the 2004 RED+WHITE Exhibition at Canada House in London. She has also designed custom pieces for style icon Sir Paul Smith’s flagship stores in Los Angeles and New York. In September 2009, Karen won top honors in Fashion/Jewelry at Western Living’s Designer of the Year event. Perhaps one of her proudest moments came when Karen was short-listed for the design of the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic medals.