Friday, December 28, 2012

Guest Star #107...Hildur Ýr Jónsdóttir

I leave for part two of my European trip in about three months (!) and I can't help but get totally absorbed in researching the places I'm going to, especially Iceland where I will be for two months. Finding jewelers who live in the places I will visit is at the top of my list so I've been searching online to find contemporary studio jewelry in Iceland. So far I've found a few jewelers that I really like including today's guest star, Hildur Ýr Jónsdóttir. Hildur's work is clearly inspired by the landscape of her home. She choses materials that echo what she sees everyday, often using things she finds as she walks, and her compositions have a rough, organic feel. I am particularly drawn to her use of rusty and distressed objects and her subtle use of color.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Another Way to Teach: Student Interviews

Eden Silver-Myer

A few times a year I'm asked to be interviewed by a college student for a project in which the student has to research a contemporary in the field or a specific concept in art jewelry. I am always flattered to be asked and always happy to help. I remember interviewing Sofia Calderwood when I was working on my BFA in 2001 for a similar paper. I spent lots of time coming up with my questions and loved talking with her on the phone. 
Sarah Davidson

Most recently, Eden Silver-Myer from the University of the Creative Arts in Farnham, England asked me about narrative in my work. Previously, she had interviewed me about how I use memory. (Narrative and memory are two concepts she is currently exploring in her own work.) Sarah Davidson from Cleveland College of Art and Design in Hartlepool, England asked me about my history in the field, my inspirations, and sought some professional advice. Sarah Pietras from Boise State University in Boise, ID asked me about my beginnings in the field, my process, and wanted to know what it is about jewelry that continues to capture my interest. Sara Zagar at Appalachian State University in Boone, NC had visited my Penland studio when I was a resident artist and saw all my collections and arrangements. She later asked me about collecting--what I collect and why and how it affects my work. 
Lauren Veale

Other interviews pre-2012 were by Lauren Veale from Massachusetts College of Art and Design in Boston. She asked me about my influences/inspirations and my thoughts on the studio and working alone vs. a sharing a space. While Holly Wilcox from Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design in Dundee, Scotland asked me questions about how the internet has impacted my work as a contemporary craftsperson.  
Holly Wilcox

Today I like to think these students are coming to me because they connect with my work just as I did with Sofia's. I learned a lot from talking with Sofia and I want to help these new students by giving them focused attention and by providing thoughtful, articulate responses. I see these interviews as another form of teaching and also an excellent opportunity for me to take time to think and write about my work. Finally, they are a great way to connect and communicate with others in the field.

Thanks for reading.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The Other Side of Exhibitions

from the exhibition "Hot Under the Collar" that I co-juried for last year's SNAG conference

I am now part of the Society of North American Goldsmiths Conference Exhibitions Committee. I will serve for three years alongside Raissa Bump, David Clemons, and Adrienne Grafton. We are responsible for organizing the exhibitions for the annual conference, starting with the 2015 conference planned for Boston. I have been interested in curating and planning exhibitions for a number of years and I'm excited for this opportunity not only because I get to help plan the exhibitions, but also because its a great way for me to give back to my field. I am honored to have been invited. The other members of the committee are all my friends, too, so I am very pleased to be included. We have had two conference calls already this year and have compiled a list of possible exhibitions venues in Boston. I am sure the planning that will unfold over the coming months will be a challenging and stimulating process and I am looking forward to working with such a talented, intelligent, and fun group of people.

Thanks for reading.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Happy Holidays

Wishing you a wonderful Holiday Season with family and friends...
and all the best to you now and throughout 2013.

Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

History Repeats

My Anchor

Since the day after Thanksgiving and the start of my Etsy Holiday Sale, I've been introducing new pieces focusing on the teardrop and bow and brass. Then more recently, I added the rose and anchor. I realized today what has developed is a lovely collection using my current favorite shapes and symbols and fueled by my interests in memory, sentiment, historical jewelry, traditional tattoos, and signs of age. As I drove in my car yesterday, I finally came up with a title, too, "History Repeats." This seems appropriate because the work is about history/memory as I revisit ideas and interests from my recent past.

Rose Bouquet

When I launched my sale a few weeks ago I had lots of drawings and ideas for this new collection. Some of these made it into actual pieces while others never made it past the paper maquettes. At one point I wasn't even into it anymore, but now I really like what's happening. There are 16 pieces so far...

Since reentering the "real world" post-Penland and Belgium, I have returned my focus to production jewelry and will continue to do so in the coming months as get my feet back on the ground and before I return to Europe in the spring. I am happy for the break from one-of-a-kind and look forward to making more pieces like the ones I've been introducing lately--something is going on here and I'm curious to see what  happens next. I hope you like them, too.


I'll be taking a break from the studio starting today to spend some long-overdue time with my family in Upstate NY. I'll be back in early January working away in my studio at 7 Ton Letterpress Collective in Asheville alongside three of the sweetest letterpress printmakers I know. Until then thanks for making my Etsy Holiday Sale a huge success and for your constant support and kind words. You are good to me.

Thanks for reading.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Guest Star #106...Leia Zumbro

Last Friday I went to the thesis show of Leia Zumbro, a metals grad student at ECU. I met Leia at the very beginning of her time at ECU and have gotten to know her over the last few years. It was wonderful to see her final work at the show and to see how far she has come since her first year. Leia's show is a collection of pieces based on growth patterns found in nature. Using these as a starting point, she creates new patterns and forms of her own--beautiful hollow forms with repeated patterns and layered negative space all finished with just the right final detail in the form of delicate chains, carved wood, or color.

Leia and friends

Thanks for reading.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

My Metal-Centric Weekend

Last Friday I drove to Raleigh to visit Tara Locklear and to attend several exhibitions. I arrived on Friday and drove with Tara to Greenville to see the MFA thesis show of Leia Zumbro. The show was lovely. (More tomorrow...!) The next day Tara and I worked in her studio and later went to Chapel Hill to attend the opening of Metal 2012 at Light Art + Design. This was my first time at the gallery and I was immediately impressed. The space alone is incredible with its high ceilings, massive support beams, and concrete floors. It has a monumental feel. The work throughout the space is wonderful-- thoughtfully chosen and displayed. The exhibition was fantastic with a variety of excellent jewelry and metalwork. I had a wonderful time visiting with friends and other attendees. A former assistant of mine even came, Emily Breyer. She worked with me one summer at Penland and makes some pretty fantastic jewelry herself. I think it's been two years since I last saw her and it was such a treat to catch up! 
Some of my favorite pieces from the show include Ele Annand's drawings on steel and the jewelry of Ashley Buchanan. (above images)

The next day I met up with Janet Link. Janet is an incredible draughtsman and curated the current Via Penland show at Rebus Works in Raleigh. The show features drawing and includes some of my Line Drawing necklaces. The gallery was closed on Sunday but I got to take a look anyway with Janet close by to talk about the work. All the artists are Penland-affiliated and most of them friends of mine. It was cool to see everyone together in that way, especially my work alongside the work of my friend Rachel Garceau
My Line Drawing No. 8 and ceramic pieces by Rachel Garceau

Next I drove to Charlotte to spend time with Day Hixson, another wonderful metalsmith. Then on Monday I had a private sale at my friend Amy's house. Amy invited her friends and we drank champagne all day. It was so much fun!

...and now I am back in Asheville, but only for a few days before I head to my mom and dad's house for Christmas. I haven't seen them since I left for Belgium and I really can't wait to see them again!

Lots more pics on Facebook!

Thanks for reading.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Guest Star #105...Tara Locklear

skateboard decks

I'm off to Raleigh today to spend the weekend with today's Guest Star, Tara Locklear. Tara and I are both in METALS 2012 at Light Art + Design and will be attending the opening on Saturday. We will also head to Greenville to attend the thesis show of our friend, Leia Zumbro, and plan to spend time together in Tara's studio. (I've been looking forward to this weekend since I got back from Belgium!) I met Tara a few years ago when she was at ECU working on her BFA; our shared love of spray paint is how our friendship began.

Tara's work focuses on jewelry as status symbol and she uses iconic images and forms to convey her ideas. What I like most about her work is her exploration and ambitious use of materials: skateboard decks, concrete, spray paint, enamel, plastic, wood, steel...Her combination of the unusual with the traditional makes the viewer take a closer look and think twice.
concrete, faux gold leaf
enamel, glass decals
steel, cement, garnets
plastic, concrete
ebony piano keys, sterling inlay, cement

Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Earrings with Cotter

My Small Earrings are currently part of an earrings exhibition at J. Cotter Gallery in Vail, CO. I'm pleased to be a part of the show and to have my work at the gallery. This is my first exhibition there and I'm in excellent company:

Masumi Kataoka
Cheryl Eve Acosta
Allyson Bone
Kristine Bolhuis
Caroline Gore
Kristi Sword
Misato Iijima
Katie Poterala

Cheryl Eve


Thanks for reading.