Uni David-Andersen

Uni David-Andersen (Gjesvik) (b. 1930)

In 1959, Uni David-Andersen, the great granddaughter of the founder of the David-Andersen company in Oslo, Norway, started up a small workshop of her own. Together with other female designers, Unn Tangerud and Marianne Berg, Uni experimented with new techniques and free sculptural styles for jewelry production. The results were both unique pieces, as well as models for larger scale production at David-Andersen. Later on the designers Liv Solnør Rogan and Solfrid Simensen joined the team.

Uni David-Andersen, silver with Tiger's Eye ring.
Silver ring with Tigers Eye, 1967
From Uni’s “Lucky Charm Rings” Series

Coming from the renouned David-Andersen family, Uni started early in the field of jewelry production. After the education at Central School of Arts and Crafts, London, 1948, she had an internship at Adda Hustedt-Andersen, New York, 1950-51, and at David-Andersen, Oslo, 1951-52. In 1953 Uni worked with Georg Jensen, New York, and 1954-55 she took up studies at The National College of Art and Design (NCAD), Oslo.

When in 1964 David-Andersen launched a new collection of cast silver jewelry called the Troll Series, some of the more popular pieces were brooches and pendants designed in Uni’s workshop, named ‘Unn’s Sun Chariot’, designed by Unn Tangerud and ‘Mariannes Hart’ by Marianne Berg. This collection of cast jewelry is characterized by a new sense of simplicity, and the use of stones found in Norway, such as the green/tourqise Amazonite and red/pink Thulite. A prominent point in the creation of the collection was the increased emphasis on the artistic value of the pieces themselves, rather than on the economic value of the materials used.

Uni’s jewelry from the sixties are progressive pieces in the tradisjon of Scandinavian Modern Design. In a unique way she combines enamel and stones, rock chrystals over monochrome enamel, and experiments with different structure and surface in the enamel. Also caracteristic for Uni are her bold rings with stones in geometric designs.

Although it is the earlier pieces that are the most well known, the workshop was up and running non stop until 2001 when it was closed down at the end of the year.