Manon van Kouswijk I was born in Warnsveld, a small town in the east of the Netherlands. She studied jewelry in the Netherlands and took a technical goldsmithing and silversmithing course in Schoonhoven. Then she went to art school at the Gerrit Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam. She moved from the Netherlands to Australia a number of years ago and currently lives in Melbourne.

Utilising a diverse range of materials such as paper, porcelain, and wood, Kouswijk explores the meaning and associations imbued in everyday objects, with a particular focus on jewelry traditions as manifest in the necklace form. Manon has exhibited internationally and has work included in permanent collections of the NGV Melbourne and Musée des Arts Decoratifs Marseille France.

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