Born in New York into a creative family and growing up in England and the Netherlands, an exciting and globally oriented life defines this 21st century artist. This international background was a powerful foundation for her later creative expressions. It did not take Bibi van der Velden long to choose a life passionately dedicated to fine arts.
Through her mother, accomplished sculptor Michèle Deiters, Bibi at young age became acquainted with the world of art; her earliest childhood memories are those of freshly cut stone. So it wasn’t a surprise that sculpting became her vocation. She started mastering fine arts in Florance, Italy and developed further at Gerrit Rietveld Academy in Amsterdam and finally at the Royal Academy of Arts in The Hague. It was in Florence that her interest in jewellery design grew. She was collecting remarkable antique objects and felt the desire to do something with those objects.
Eventually she started her Wearable Works of Art jewellery line in 2005 using unique pieces, antiques and personal belongings to create exclusive jewellery. Bibi’s jewellery pieces have a craftsmanship-meets-design aesthetic, featuring an unusual blend of materials. Every piece arises from a creative journey that might have start with a vintage pocket watch, a family heirloom, or that 40,000-year-old Mammoth tooth.
The handmade creations are a guileless enrapturement with nature and creativity and can be seen as a natural outgrowth of the English countryside where she grew up. She now divides her work across several continents and has studios in Amsterdam, Switzerland, France and Bangkok.
Her choices were never coincidental, they illustrate her wish to combine historical techniques and materials with her innovative visions, perseverance, talent and creativity. Bibi’s jewellery is highly technically accomplished. Pick up one of her fine jewellery pieces and you can open it, twist the stone around, and marvel at how diamonds are used in extraordinary ways.
Working with sustainable materials and creating awareness for a better living environment is very important for the conscious designer. To her it’s about achieving a balance between luxury and sustainability in a way that chimes with the mood of the modern consumer.
Bibi is known for her sense of fun and sharp appreciation of everyday beauty, mixed with love for travel and sculptural form: has fuelled Bibi’s design into globally acclaimed and desired works of art.