Born in 1962 in Offenburg, Deutschland, Bettina Speckner began her studies in the painting department of the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich under Prof. H. Sauerbruch. After a few years she moved to the jewelry department under Professor Herman Jünger receiving her diploma from Professor Otto Künzli.
Bettina Speckner has received many awards and accolades for her work including the prestigious Herbert Hoffmann Prize, commendations for the Danner Prize and The Prize of the State of Bavaria. Since her first solo exhibition in 1995, she has shown internationally, both in numerous solo exhibitions and group shows including Brooching it Diplomatically, curated by Helen Drutt English and Micromegas curated by Otto Kunzli.
Since her first solo exhibition in 1995, her work has been widely exhibited abroad, both in solo and group exhibitions, including Brooching it Diplomatically, curated by Helen Drutt English, Micromegas curated by Otto Künzli, Maker Wearer Viewer , Contemporary Narrative European Jewelery curated by Jack Cunningham at the Mackintosh Gallery (Glasgow School of Art) in 2005, or Multiple Exposures - Jewelry and photography, curated by Ursula Ilse-Neumann at MAD New York in 2014.
Her works are present in the most important public collections, including the Helsinki Design Museum, the Pforzheim Schmuckmuseum, the Berlin Museum of Art, the Neue Sammlung - Design Museum in Munich, the Museum of Art and Design in Chicago, the Museum für Kunst and Gewerbe in Hamburg, the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam and finally the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.
In my work I am particularly fond of photographs. Sometimes they are old and show bygone places or people of former times, quite often however I use photos I took myself of trunks, flowers, lonesome lanes or landscapes. These pictures turn into pieces of jewelry.
To turn photos into gems, the motives are etched on small metal plates or burned on enamel. They become part of an individual composition: precious metals, diamonds, coloured stones and objects found begin to lead lives of their own. Patterns and ornaments arise. Quite often I employ even seemingly banal but peculiar every-day items, forging the sublime and the profane into a new poetic harmony.
I never work with the intention to decorate things or to make them look prettier, I try to discover the soul of an object or the essence of a photograph and want to shape something new which appeals to me and to other people far beyond the optical appearance.