Vibe Harsløf, goldsmith, on craft and the art of solving riddles

Did you grow up in a creative family?

Actually, they’re a real mix of artists and engineers. Although I’m hopeless at figures and maths, there’s very likely a nerdy engineer hidden somewhere inside me. I approach my jewellery work both intuitively and technically. I’m really fixated on the angle in an earring being just so. Or finding the perfect way to fasten a necklace. Nerdiness is part and parcel of my practice and I love to set myself tasks. For example, how can I make earrings where pearls seem to be pouring out of the ear – and fit as many different ears as possible? I spend much time simplifying the complex and overcoming the technical challenges.

My father and grandfather both trained as sheet-metal workers and ended up as engineers. I’ve probable got my dexterity from them. My grandfather spent hours in his hobby workshop repairing just about anything. I grew up in a family where we were encouraged to go for the things we really wanted to do – and to believe that we’d succeed.