Kobi Bosshard is recognised as one of New Zealand’s foremost jewellery artists. Born in Switzerland, Kobi immigrated to New Zealand in 1961. He worked briefly in a Wellington jewellery shop owned by a fellow Swiss jeweller after arriving in New Zealand, but found the work too conservative and left after a brief time. He became a mountain guide, then returned to full-time jewellery making in 1966. A third-generation goldsmith, Kobi soon became a pioneer of studio jewellery-making in New Zealand. In 1970 Kobi's work was included in Silver, Gold, Greenstone at New Vision Gallery in Auckland, the first substantial exhibition of contemporary jewellery in New Zealand. In 1972 he was included in Craft 72, an exhibition of New Zealand potters, weavers, wood-turners and jewellers organised by the Queen Elizabeth II Arts Council and toured overseas through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In a 1985 interview Kobi described his preference for using a limited number of machines in his jewellery making and avoiding pre-cut metals: 'If you buy pieces of silver cut to standard thicknesses, you are tempted to stay with those measurements. It's better to have fewer skills and be master of those than to have many techniques and end up working to formula'. In the same interview he also said, “I have to make a piece of jewellery before I know what it looks like. My hands and material know what they are doing: the jewellery has to feel right or it's not successful. I try not to let my mind get in the way. I don't want to end up thinking I am smart and clever and using tricks.”
Kobi has developed a distinctive minimalist aesthetic and produces seemingly flawless work. His style is instantly recognisable to followers of New Zealand jewellery and design. His work is represented in museum and gallery collections throughout the country including Te Papa.
Though now retired from full-time practice, Kobi continues to create as and when he pleases from his Middlemarch workshop.
Please contact us for the current availability of Kobi's work.