HISTORY & CONCEPTS
Postcon was founded in 1999 by Manuel Vilhena, artisan, teacher, contemporary
jeweller, adult educator, chef, and bicycle mechanic - not
necessarily in that order.
Postcon, initially, promoted Post-Contemporary Jewellery and other (then) far-fetched ideas, expounded in Manuel's 1998 book "Do you speak Jewellery?", a seminal text for Contemporary Jewellery theory, one of the first ever to be produced showing a theoretical approach to making Art Jewellery. This book is the repository of concepts such as E=mc3 (Einstein's mistake), and Jewellery as language, amongst other (then) novelties.
Postcon went through a series of changes through the years, opening a school for contemporary Jewellery in 2015 in Austria. Nowadays, Postcon promotes continuously evolving educational programmes.
Manuel was born in Lisbon, Portugal, in the late 60's and started making Jewellery in his teens, learning from master craftsmen in Brazil. He completed his training as a classical goldsmith in Portugal in 1989 and worked in Italy in a small family owned workshop for many years.
He studied Contemporary Jewellery in Cologne, Germany, under Prof. Skubic, and at the Royal College of Art, London, under Prof. Watkins, where he completed his Master's degree in 1998.
Since graduation, he has taught extensively at educational institutions throughout the world, including the Royal College of Art, London; Hiko Mizuno College, Tokyo; Silpakorn University, Bangkok; AR.CO., Lisbon, Alpe-Adria University, Klagenfurt, the Shenkar College, Tel-Aviv and the Alchimia Jewellery School, Florence, where he was senior lecturer for six years. He was workshop leader at the Salzburg Summer Academy for two years and held a Professorship at the Oslo National Academy of the Arts for four years, having worked there for a total of eight years.
His artwork is exhibited worldwide and can be seen in several books on Contemporary Jewellery and in some public permanent collections, including those of the Danner Rotunde, Munich, the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, the MUDE Design Museum, Lisbon, amongst a few others.
Since 2015 Manuel has been engaged mainly in educational projects and in 2019 he completed a Master's Degree in Adult Education. He practises worldwide, aiming at developing people's autonomy, critical thinking, social praxis and creative potential.
He is an entertaining lecturer and most of what he says is true.
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