Design PF

Pforzheim Revisited:

Preserving - documenting - reviving old jewellery-making techniques

„Pforzheim University and the German Museum of Technology Berlin (DTMB) have signed a cooperation agreement under the motto "Just like in the old days - but different": "Making new jewelry with historical machines" is its theme, and with this goal in mind, students from the Jewellery program at Pforzheim University travel to Berlin once a year for a week to learn old techniques such as hollow embossing, pressing or guilloché in the "Manufactured Jewellery Production" department. They are supported by the management and staff of the department as well as by members of the working group "Jewellery connects“.

Renate Förster, Medien-Info DTMB vom 28. Mai 2010

From idea to reality

The project originated from the work of Dr. Gabriele Wohlauf, historian and former head of production techniques "Manufakturelle Schmuckproduktion" at the German Museum of Technology in Berlin. Thus, old machines and know-how from Pforzheim found their way to Berlin. For this purpose, veteran and experienced Pforzheim goldsmiths were brought together and the working group "Jewellery Connects" was founded. These specialists pass on their often secret craftsmanship, technical and artistic skills and knowledge as lecturers in Berlin and Pforzheim to the next generation of jewellery designers and goldsmiths and silversmiths and contribute to the unraveling, preservation and transmission of old process techniques through personal and lively communication.

PF Revisited Project at the School of Design

It is in this context that the PF Revisited project of the Jewellery program takes place every winter semester. After an intensive workshop week at the Deutsches Technikmuseum Berlin, students explore the insights and knowledge they have gained, respectfully and playfully reinterpret these valuable traditions, place them in unfamiliar contexts, and cross-pollinate them with other materials and techniques. With their work, the students contribute to the revival and dynamic preservation of these important and still potential-rich manufakturelle jewellery techniques. Prof. Andreas Gut was in charge of the project and its sponsor. For 2018/19 Dipl. Des. Ingird Römmich-Werner could be won, and in 2019|20 she led it together with Dipl. Des. Jana Patz. After the Covid-related interruption, we plan to continue with a new group of students from 2022 on.


The long-term goal of the "Pforzheim Revisted" project is the creation of a "Manufakturellen-Transfer-Zentrum" (MTZ) in which Pforzheim University (in the lead), the Goldschmiedeschule Pforzheim and the Technische Museum Pforzheim are involved. The MTZ is intended to bring together old with new in order to merge technologies from completely different eras. In this way, the Pforzheim jewellery scene is to be revived and the designation "Goldstadt Pforzheim" returned to its original meaning.

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The company C. Hafner Gold- und Silberscheideanstalt is sponsor of this project.

Photos: Sophie Bernauer