Jewellery designer Juanjuan Hu was featured on Design China only a few months back. We were so impressed by her designs, however, that we caught up with her more recently to uncover more details about her practice, current projects, as well as her journey to date.
Where are you originally from, and where are you based now?
I am from Shanghai, China where I have lived and worked for about 10 years now. I am currently based in Shanghai.
What do you do?
I am teaching at university level and building up my jewellery design studio, too. I have also been co-operating with industry/jewellery companies on a by-project basis.
How did you develop an interest in design?
I’ve always been interested in design and creativity. For me, design is about creating by following my heart.
You studied both industrial and jewellery design. How do these two subjects combine to inform your design process?
Of course, my focus is now on jewellery design – but the knowledge and experience that I gained from studying industrial design provides me with alternative ideas and perspectives on what I do now. For example, I tend to think more about the structure of my pieces, as well as “wearing experiences” and different technologies.
How would you describe your time (as a student) in London?
I very much enjoyed my time in London. The creative atmosphere of the city, the professional tutors and the library resources at Central Saint Martins (where I studied jewellery design) were excellent and provided me with much needed nutrition for my design work.
What were the differences between studying design in China and studying design in the UK? ?
The main differences I think are cultural. In the UK, for instance, students pay more attention to experimentation, design methods and personal identity.
Tell us about a personal project you are most proud of.
I am quite proud of my Fluid collection. Besides the form of the jewellery, I heavily researched how to express the sensory experience of fluids to wearers, and how to create flexibility and adaptability through different materials and new techniques.
Is there much demand for jewellery design in China?
Yes! China has a rapidly growing market for high-end jewellery. More and more customers these days have a good eye and taste for both fashion and jewellery.