Many times in a craft artist’s life, explorable paths
branch out from the main drag and demand attention.
My first branch: In 1976, having been a full-time parent for many years,
a folksinger, a maker of ethnic bead necklaces, a crocheter/knitter, and more,
when a dear friend, who was a superb goldsmith, reminded me that she had
seen me perform, and now was teaching a class in jewelry making,
and insisted, since I loved jewelry, that I take her class.
I have never looked back.
My second branch: in 1996, after years of working with traditional jewelry
making techniques, metal clay was introduced in the United States. There were
several avenues I had been thinking about wandering into, and metal clay propelled
me into them. I was invited to one of the first Master Classes and took off from there,
using the material for my pieces and teaching the use of metal clay for twenty years.
As the Curator/Juror for the seminal 2001 Precious Metal Clay exhibition,
“Millenial Metal”, at the Lynn Tendler Bignell Gallery (Brookfield Craft Center, CT),
I created the first formal exhibition of work in the United States, whose selected
work was made using metal clay. I continued to work for many years to become
proficient in this new way of working with precious metal, combining it with the
techniques I had previously used.
My third branch: I am a colorist in many ways in my life (gemstones in
my work, my wardrobe, knitting/crocheting, gardening in my personal life).
The unique properties of metal clay provided me with a new way to bring color
to my work with vitreous enamels. The most recent iteration of my work
is rich with the use of vitreous enamels with metal clay.
This is an all-consuming collaboration between me
and those techniques and materials.
In addition to working as a full-time studio jeweler since 1978, and teaching,
I have exhibited nationally in galleries and juried craft shows, including the
Smithsonian Craft Show, ACC Craft Fairs and The Paradise City Arts Festivals.
I use a multitude of techniques (metal clay, engraving, stamping, embossing,
dieforming, fold-forming, patination, roll-printing, cold connections,
blockprinting, assemblage and collage), combined with various
media (sterling silver, fine silver, gemstones, 14k gold details,
found objects, organic materials and occasional alternative metals).
Many of my jewels are paired with ‘nesting cases’ that serve
as homes for them when they are not being worn. These cases
and their elements, often including poetry and drawings,
thematically frame and re-emphasize the jewels themselves.