"Discomfort is an acquired taste, as is much contemporary jewelry. But feeling uncomfortable ignites self-consciousness and elicits a state of heightened alert. (…) And sometimes being uneasy in the world is the only way to achieve comfort with one’s own skin."
Suzanne Ramljak, "Contemporary Jewelry in Perspective", p 219

It’s difficult to dissociate a traditional piece of jewelry from the body, for this is its carrier, its reference and the place where the piece is finally complete.
The contemporary approach often questions this relationship, launching provocations, challenging conventions, testing physical boundaries and altering the perception of the viewer through wearable sculptures that stand on the frontier between the functional object and the work of art.

But what happens once we use the body not only as a display but also as a source of inspiration?
How can the body shift from scenery to an active participant of the creative process?

There are jewels that mark and pierce the body and jewels that don’t even touch it, exemplary cases of utility and ergonomics and also great examples of superficiality and discomfort.
Is the jewelry piece supposed to be an adornment that aims to serve and enhance this human display, an autonomous artistic object or a foreign element that harms it?

Let’s take a look at the body and find more than what’s palpable and visible, an entire universe composed of layers of tissues, structures and information. Colors, textures, shapes, limbs, organs, bones, veins, nerves, muscles, cells, hair, fluids, gestures, movements, senses and sensations.

The inspiration in the body can include formal references, even as source for raw materials. It can be a starting point for new approaches on jewelry making, a search for new areas to place the jewel, a changed perception of the human anatomy and the establishment of different levels of relationships between jewel and body. It may simply be the formal exteriorisation of something that is usually hidden or unnoticed at first sight.

Once again we are here to raise questions, to challenge and not to restrict - we want to open our eyes as we open horizons, inviting jewelers to take inspiration from anatomy in this new Challenge - challenge yourselves!

With the main objective to show the quality and diversity of contemporary jewelry, opening its doors to the general public, Tincal lab invites every year jewelers from around the world for a Challenge: the creation of up to 3 pieces with the maximum price of 100€ each, inspired by a theme.
From this Open Call launched annually in June results an international collective exhibition of unique characteristics, consisting of about 100 exclusive jewelry pieces created by the 40 to 45 jewelers selected by the jury. The opening is at Tincal lab on November, on the date of Simultaneous Openings event in Miguel Bombarda quarter, in Porto, accompanied by the release of a catalog.
In each edition, since 2018, has been awarded the Selection of the Jury Award and two Selection of the Public Awards (voting in person and online), consisting of an exhibition at Tincal lab over the following year.

In 2019, the fifth edition of Tincal lab Challenge launches the theme: Jewelry and Anatomy.

Selection will be made by a jury based on the artist's portfolio and will be reduced to a maximum of 40 participants.
Please note that the work presented to the jury does't need to reflect this year's theme - the pieces to present in the event should be created only after the participation's approval.
All candidates will be contacted. Selected candidates will have until July 15th to formalise the registration through the payment of the participation fee (20€).
Sending this form implies the acceptance of the terms of participation described in the bottom of the page (please, read carefully).

_ d e a d l i n e s
Application: until June 30th 2019
Selection: until July 10th 2019
Reception of pieces: until September 30th 2019
Exhibition: from November 9th to December 31st 2019
Period of sale in shop and online: until June 30th 2020
Return of pieces to the artists: from July 1st 2020

_ j u r y
Ana Pina (Portugal) | representing Tincal lab |
Graduated in architecture (FAUP, 2004), worked in this area for some years before discovering the world of jewelry. She’s been developing her personal brand since 2012, after a course at Engenho e Arte School. In 2015 she founded Tincal lab, a work, shop, exhibition and dynamization space dedicated to contemporary jewelry, in the center of Porto.

Áurea Praga (Portugal) | representing Jewelry |
Illustrator and jewelry maker, combining these two fields in her work. Post-Graduated in Jewelry Design and Master in Design, both at ESAD Matosinhos. Graduated in Communication Design, by FBAUP. At the moment she is Coordinator of the Jewelry Department and teaches at ESAD Matosinhos since 2016.

Paulo Rui Monteiro (Portugal) | representing Anatomy |
Graduated in Medicine (FMUP, 1995), with specialty in Reconstructive and Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, highlight to the title of Fellow of the European Board of Plastic Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery, 2005. He develops combined surgical activity in several public and private units of the country. Since always also a lover of fine arts.

More about Tincal lab at
[photo credit: Anatomie Pour l'Artiste, Sarah Simblet/John Davis]

Name *
Your answer
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I am: *
Country of origin *
Your answer
Current country *
Your answer
E-mail *
Your answer
Online platform (website, online shop, social media, etc) with a presentation of your jewelry work and background. If you don't have any, send us an e-mail to with 3 to 5 photos of representative jewelry works.
Your answer
Questions and suggestions
Your answer
Selected artists are free to create up to 3 different jewelry pieces that fit the theme Jewelry and Anatomy, that will be exhibited and available for sale during the event.

The pieces should be created in exclusive for the event.
The artist shouldn’t make them public before the opening date and will not sell them in parallel during the period of exclusive use by the organisation. The possibility and conditions of posterior reproduction and sale remain at the artist's discretion.
On the other hand, it’s encouraged the promotion of the event (with due reference), even during the creation period, including sharing of images related to the work process and sources of inspiration, for example, if possible using the tags #tincallab and #tincallabchallenge2019.

The formalisation of the registration implies the acceptance of the terms of participation and the payment of a participation fee of 20€, which helps covering some logistics expenses and the possible return of pieces.
All payments should be made, preferably and as appropriate, by bank transfer (artists in Portugal) or Paypal (artists from other countries).

The pieces must be delivered in time to the organisation (in person or sent by post). If they arrive after September 30th it is not possible to guarantee that the artist will be included in the catalog.
According to the requirements of the catalog and depending on the characteristics of the pieces, it is possible that only one is photographed by the organisation. To ensure that all the pieces will later be included in the online shop, it is advisable to send high resolution quality photos by email (white background, 300dpi, minimum size 2000x2000px).

Please be advised that shipments made to Portugal from countries outside the European Union may be subject to customs verification - Tincal lab can not be responsible for the delay and payment of fees that may result of it. In these cases, the use of non-precious metals is strongly advised.

After the event, the pieces that are not sold will be, all or partially, included in the online shop for the minimum period of 6 months, after which will be returned or kept in the online shop, depending on what’s agreed between the parties.
There is the hypothesis of a traveling exhibition, if proposals appear.

Pieces will be sent on a consignment basis and the maximum retail price is of 100€. The commission of Tincal lab is of 40% (example: in a piece with final price of 100€ the artist price is 60€ (VAT included, if applicable).
The establishment of a maximum price for the pieces shouldn’t be seen as a limitation, but rather as a way to raise the bar of the challenge, helping demystify contemporary jewelry to the public and giving everyone the opportunity to purchase a piece.

The aim is to create an event with its own unifying image, but ensuring the individuality of each artist, so it’s encouraged the delivery of the pieces in the individual packaging of the brand, to make the authorship of the piece clear when it reaches the customer.

We aim, above all, that this concept will serve to inspire us to create and to bring the world of contemporary jewelry to a more comprehensive and relevant audience.

Good work to everyone!

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