Born in Raadvad, Denmark, the son of a blacksmith, Jensen's earliest training was as a goldsmith, with his spare time given over to modelling in clay and creating sculptures. He entered the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Copenhagen with the intention of becoming a sculptor, and completed his training in 1892.
The difficulty of earning a living through sculpture caused him to start a small pottery workshop with a friend, Christian Joachim. In 1900 a large travelling grant allowed him the opportunity to visit Italy and France, and to consider new ideas and how to apply these to everyday objects (following Arts&Crafts principles).
By 1904, after working with a silver smith, he opened his own small workshop. He never followed fashion, but created it. Inspired by the dominant style of Art Nouveau, he began making fabulous jewellery employing favoured stones of moonstones, lapis, amber, onyx, cornelian and coral in free-flowing forms of silver mount. Later, as his name became synonymous with outstanding artistic and artisan quality, he was able to invest in quantities of raw materials, and to expand from one assistant to a staff of skilled designers and associates.
He exhibited cases of work at Newlyn from 1927-1930, and featured in Hardie (1995) is an illustration of a silver fruit-bowl by Jensen (p80), with grape motif that he used on numerous bowls, candlesticks and bottle trays at the end of WWI.
Silversmith and sculptor
works and access
NAG July 1927 (Silverware, including a wine jug and rose bowl), Summer 1927, Autumn 1927, Summer (Arts and Crafts) 1928 (Handwrought silver, miniature of a fruit bowl embellished with a hanging grape pattern), Autumn 1928, Christmas 1928, Christmas Show 1930
Western Morning News 20 July 1927
Hardie (1995) 100 Years in Newlyn: Diary of a Gallery (illus p80)
(2009) Artists in Newlyn and West Cornwall
NAG Exhibition Programme of Pictures & Crafts (July-September 1928)