Djara Van Hove


What happens if jewelry designers get their hands on chewing gum?

While Ted Noten emphasizes the act of chewing and is convinced that our mouth is also capable of creating art. Corrina Goutos finds an innovative technique to use this atypical material for jewellery.

Ted Noten

Is a Dutch jeweller and conceptual artist who criticizes the history of jewellery and our characteristic state of life. Noten examines the apparent familiarity, symbols and forms of our daily surroundings, including jewellery, and provides them with a new context. He is known for his acrylic handbags and suitcase and these transparent plastic designs contain valuable or eccentric objects such as precious jewellery, weapons or even a mouse with a small pearl necklace. Ted Noten's artworks can be found in galleries, museums and private collections around the world.

It is an ongoing project developed in 1998, and although it has been running for 20 years it still has a very contemporary appearance. This project was first performed during an open day at the Rotterdam Art Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen. It attracted hundreds of visitors, including many children, who found their way to this interactive event.  



Ted Noten - Various Brooches of Chew Your Own Brooch -


They were each given a piece of chewing gum and asked to ‘Chew their own Brooch’. After spitting out their self-sculptured piece of art and pleased with the shape, the piece of gum was carefully placed in a small box, marked, and later judged by a panel. Three selected winners were given the chance to showcase themselves with their brooches. The chewing gums were then cast in gold, silver or bronze and provided each with pins to make it wearable so it would transform into a real piece of jewellery. 

For many years Noten has provided clients with their own chewing kit. Containing a piece of gum, some talcum powder in a small box (prevent it from sticking) and an envelope. If the client is pleased with the mouth modeled shape, the piece of gum is returned in gold or silver casted wearable brooch. 



Ted Noten - Chew Your Own Brooch Kit - Source:


Ted Noten came up with a concept, where he puts himself aside as a designer, to show that anyone can be an artist, even a child. He just provides the packaging with an instruction so that the client has enough information to realize the project. The material isn't that hard to process and it's not even valuable. Until an artist decides to give a more significant meaning by lifting it out of its everyday surroundings and place it back in a new reality.

Sidenote: Chewing gum is just an ordinary candy product where almost everyone has access to. It is not specifically intended to exclude any race, class, gender, religion, ... .



Ted Noten - Chew Your Own Brooch -  

Discover more designs? Check out Ted Noten's website or take a look at his Instagram.


Corrina Goutos

Is a German, young and upcoming, contemporary jewellery artist. Her work involves themes of consumerism. She takes an artistic approach to expose the consequences of our reckless lifestyle on the planet. Even designers encounter this challenge, they need to avoid or minimize the adverse impact of all used products. As a young designer, she feels responsible to send out powerful messages and start making a difference. Goutos crafts art jewellery almost entirely out of human waste, using household materials or found objects that people can identify, such as lighters, headphones, aluminium cans and many more. By manipulating these materials, she creates her masterpieces. This way they gain a new purpose and meaning. 

The following creations were inspired by ‘The Sunday brooch project’. Where she assembles brooches on a daily basis for a year with the intention to expand her conceptions of what jewellery is and where it belongs. During that time she was fascinated by the Berlin wall, which is almost entirely consumed by chewing gum. This action may be part of a political statement. 


Corrina Goutos - Designs with Chewing Gum -

Goutos creates a series of jewellery where chewing gum* transforms into a decorative connection and keeps the different elements of the piece together. Multicoloured stones are slightly pushed into the gooey matter and stick in place, while others hold a decorative chain. One of the most remarkable creations portrays a smiley face. This fun design sends out a message of nostalgia and childishness. Chewing gum is often associated with a longing for our childhood, back then everything was funny and happy memories linger in our mind. Other times, she symbolises the downside of the candy. It is anything but environmentally friendly. It goes beyond street pollution. 



Corrina Goutos - Stuck in my Teeth -

*The question is whether she uses chewing gum or a modified substance to mimic it since it's not mentioned in the descriptions. 

Check out Corrina Goutos' website or take a look at her Instagram.


If you thought chewing gum was an unconventional material for jewellery. What do you think of jewellery made with human secretions? Or Can't get enough of gum yet? Discover more artists, experiments and facts here.