Ciffs revealing sedimentary rock inspire the work of Carly Wright. “I believe that the images that I see on my daily walks, give me a vocabulary. I often stop to sketch , or pick up a stone or a piece of bark. These small objects sit on my drawing table for weeks, sometimes years. When I sit down to design new pieces I look to them for inspiration, and try to convey something of what I see in them to others. I am also drawn to architectural symbols such as windows or doors.”
Irish artist, Angela O’Kelly, combines nontraditional jewelry materials…paper & fabric…with precious metals to create bold, layered pieces. “I’m attracted to clashing colours in nature” she says. Texture is really important in her work. Boglands and the seaside rock formations inspire lightweight materials that don’t weigh the wearer down. “My designs are not for the everyday”, she explains. “More occasion wear than day wear, each design is a decorative object in its own right that you can admire as an art object when you’re not wearing it.”
There was an interesting article in the Wall Street Journal this week about James Taffin de Givenchy and his 753 year old family history book. While his uncle founded the fashion house, Givenchy, in 1952, James moved in a different direction…jewelry. The family history dates from the 1300’s and continues with updates from family members throughout the world.
What happened to this month? The last three weeks have been a swirl of family, art show prep and then a week of fabulous weather that constantly lured us outside. Spring on a barrier island is amazing…two bobcat sightings in the last week, the alligators are roaring, and we should see new fawns any day now.
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Steven Brixner approaches a new collection focused on one idea, but he allows the work to take him in numerous directions. “New work for me, begins to take form from a single idea. I tend to make lots of parts and then start putting them together into a series of pieces. I sometimes work on a series for a particular exhibition and then abandon it or I may continue to evolve it into a substantial body of work over many years. Inspiration comes from many sources. Natural forms, geometric shapes, primitive jewelry, historic metalwork, architecture, collaboration on a commissioned work, and unusual stones, have all led me in new directions.”
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In Frey Wille’s homage series, the focus is now on Expressionist painter Egon Scheile. “The themes of expressionism were diverse, experimental and radical. Artists expressed their deepest emotions through strong colour and design. They did not want to paint pretty pictures, or even realistic ones—they used ugliness, distortion and disassociation to express their own feelings, and elicit strong emotional reaction.”
The Frey Wille site has a fascinating series of photos that focus on the design process. The elements and colors may provide inspiration for your next project.
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The inspiration for Alyson Iwamoto’s Wabi Sabi collection came from her Japanese grandmother’s teacups and the California desert. Alyson “is continually inspired by nature’s intense and unexpected beauty. And my love for clay inspires me to create! Like a Zen garden, I look to express only what is essential. She is a native Los Angeles ceramic artist. Both her Japanese heritage and L.A. roots deeply influence her work. She has worked in clay for 20 years and she has pursued her dream as a full-time ceramic artist for the last four.
For nearly a decade Alyson taught children in Skid Row at Inner-City Arts. There she learned about humanity and imagination. She received her BFA in ceramics from Cal State University Long Beach.”
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Over the course of a 20 year career as a metalsmith, Julia Turner became frustrated with the sheer weight of metal and moved to other materials, seeking more warmth, color and volume. “Among the dozens of objects arranged on an 8-foot table in her sun-washed jewelry studio are bowls of beads, chunks of wood – some natural, some stained colors ranging from canary yellow to cerulean blue – a roll of safety-orange duct tape, postcards, a shard of shiny black record vinyl, several books, and a carefully trimmed and shaped lump of charcoal salvaged from a backyard barbecue. Vignettes, color stories, and contrasting geometries play out across the 32 square feet, which, viewed from above is like the love child of Wassily Kandinsky and Josef Albers.”
You can read more about Julia’s work in the February/March issue of American Craft.
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