Frequently Asked Question: MASieraad Hasselt-Amsterdam

Q: If I don’t have a jewellery or artistic background, is it possible to study at MASieraad Hasselt Amsterdam?
A: Yes, it is possible. Once you are selected for this program, you agree to take a basic course in jewellery technique in the first year. This course is obligatory to obtain your MA in Visual Arts, specifically Jewellery and Gold- and Silversmithing certificate at PXL Hasselt, which comes together with your MASieraad certificate.

Q: What are your ideal candidates?
A: We are interested in people who have a different background of any kind, fine artists, performative artists, designers, fashion designers, architects, philosophers – as long as you are openminded, are interested in the human aspect of design, in detailing, the intimate and ritual, in reading objects and materials, and in the relationship between people and things.

Q: Can you study in Hasselt – Amsterdam, while not living in Hasselt or Amsterdam?
A: MASieraad is not an online course. However, it is possible to participate in the program as a parttime student. But there are certain rules and regulations which still have to be defined.

Q: I am deeply ambitious to study with you, and I have the right background and cv, but I cannot pay the tuition. Does it make sense to apply anyway?
A: We cannot give you any guarantee, but we are working on a program that would enable some selected students to study with us on a scholarship-base.

Q:A very simple one : will you teach some computer design technology, 3D printing, etc?
A; Yes forsure. We have 3 printers and there is a course for 3d printing on which you can attend and learn to work in Rhino and Cad-Cam. Also there is a technician that

teaches you to handle the machines.

Q: What is the kind of curriculum that MASieraad will offer to the students?
A: The main focus of the curriculum will be focused on the individual improvement of the student. You will have to fulfill the typical qualifications for a Masters degree.

In the first year the sum will be shaped in 3 projects around the central theme “Challenging Gold” (year 2021). Each project will have a period of 5-6 weeks coordinated by Gijs Bakker, Ruudt Peters and Ted Noten accompanied with their partner teachers and many invited guest artists for lectures/workshops etc.

Liesbeth den Besten will, throughout the year, focus on research and theory. In the end helping the student come to their thesis concept.

In the second year the main focus is on your chosen masters project, you will come up with a thesis and final works. The first and second year starts with an intensive period in Amsterdam and everything will end up with the final critiques.

Q:What is the relevance of being located across the 2 cities of Hasselt and Amsterdam?
A: Hasselt is the place to find silence and focus-Amsterdam is the place to load yourself with inspiration by meeting musea/people and all kinds of cultural input.

Q:"What is the difference between being a jewelry artist and a jewelry designer?” A: An artist makes without considering the market systems, the money matters, like if I invest 1000 euro in making and materials at least it should bring me double.
No, an artist does not care if others like/love his work, he does not confirm to taste/trends. He is independent.
A designer is beside all this also more involved in aesthetics.

Q:Gijs, Ted, Ruudt and Liesbeth: Individually, you are all pioneers of contemporary jewellery and jewellery education. What made you start a new Jewellery Education system of your own?
A: We are not very happy with the diversity that comes out from schooling systems, too much all alike. Automatically we look too much like the paradise bird, beautiful but not enough.

Jewellery has so many possibilities, in my opinion even more than the arts. The connotations to human, history, material, emotions, memories, traditions and so on; we want to explore them more and not end up with beautiful brooches.

Q: What do you think is the relevance of questioning and learning about Jewellery making in today’s times, especially in the context of uncertainty posed by the pandemic?
A: With jewellery you learn to think on the square inch

Q: How is the MASieraad system different from conventional Jewellery Education?
A: Many aspects are different: You will work with 4 renowned teachers and each of them have a partner teacher – younger blood and contrasting methodologies.

We work in two cities-two cultures, two different atmospheres
We are inviting loads of guest teachers from other fields
We strive for not only having jewellery makers but also: architects/designers/artists/craftsman

Q: What were your experiences, observations and learnings with the first cohort of students at your Challenging Jewellery course at the Sandberg Institute? How has MASieraad evolved since 2018?
A: To see 12 students from very different backgrounds, hardly no jewellers, it was great to see how they found their own way. Some got lost and then it was difficult because the teaching was not done by us for the Challenging Jewellery programme and the head, Bless, had very strong ideas about how to guide the students.

Q:Has your view for the next masters changed after the CJ course?
A: Yes, I believe more in working in group projects during the first year where students are confronted with other opinions and learn to discuss ideas from their colleagues.

Q:Who can apply for this course?
A: Everybody who has a serious and passionable mentality to discuss/develop/explore jewellery. The technical requirements include-
You need a BA diploma and those who have no experience with certain jewellery techniques, that are like a brush for a painter, will have to do a few preliminary courses (included in the school fee).

Q: What about students coming from places where contemporary jewellery has not evolved as much as in Europe? How can people from these places contextualize this learning if they come to attend this course?
A: For those students it can be an advantage because they don't carry the ballast of european history and they can bring in their own culture in jewellery.

Q: How much would it cost to study at MASieraad? Do you provide financial assistance and encouragement to students without the financial means?

The school fee is 14 k a year

We cannot give you any guarantee, but we are working on a program that would enable some selected students to study with us on a scholarship-base. We encourage you to look for outside funding and have found some institutes that could support you.
We advise checking these pages as well as other funding pages found on the internet or specifically for your country.  


2.Application Deadline: Open
Total Award Amount: EUR 1,000
Goethe Goes Global Scholarship 2021


Q: How do you view the future of Jewellery (and of the future students of jewellery making)? 
A: As a huge playground for thoughts-idea’s-material love-discussion concerning live connected themes etc etc etc etc.

Q:"What is the standard for criticizing a piece of jewelry? What is the difference between good and better?"
A: If it is worked out – criticized by yourself – if it has enough resonance with the context it is made for – if it is well made (unless the concept is that it should fall apart after a few weeks),
Well, it could be hundreds of criteria depending on the work that is being criticized.

Q: It seems that the contemporary jewellery world is back to gold. I like the idea although it is so crazy expensive right now! Why do you think it’s back in the game? Or was it ever really out?
A: Interesting question. As gold was always one of the most used materials in jewellery due to the fact that it is easy to handle (almost like butter), it always had a huge role in having your own “bank” on your body. Due to the fact that wars were almost dailies, and in some countries still are!

But, the main discussion we want to create is not the fact that we plead for more use of gold, instead we would like to critically discuss all the aspects connected to it.
Politically/Socially-and in the end maybe we find a replacement.
All this is part of challenging Gold.

Q: "Is it really important for art creation to get the "resonance" of the audience? What about jewelry art?"
A: In that sense yes we strive for the same-art is like ping-pong.
Of course there are exceptions, some people make art and are completely not interested in feedback from society. They do it to develop themselves, to enjoy the making to etc etc.
Art has no limits in that sense also Art jewellery* has not.

* “..using the world Art-Jewellery is a curse – because we also never say Art-Painting, or Art Sculpting”

- Gijs Bakker