The last few days have been challenging to my patience for me as a maker: metalsmith and jeweler. I’ve placed an order for sheet metals from a trusted supplier, and I’ve started a new body of work that I expect to be fairly different content-wise from any of the metals’ work I’ve done in the past. Since I work mostly in silver, the sky-rocketing costs have forced me to send in my scrap to a refiner and await new materials in a proper size that is worthy of the time it will take to create my new pieces.
Looking through my older work, the pieces that garnered the most attention and entry to juried group shows are my lockets. These one-of-a-kind pieces evoke the decorative patterning found in objects from the decorative arts of the Renaissance period. My pieces are a commentary on images of women and the “gaze”, and how devices of jewelry containing female images from famous paintings throughout art history (such as depictions of Judith) could be seen as the consummate image of female militancy. This particular piece appropriates the image of Lucas Cranach’s Judith and Holofernes (c. 1537) manipulated to black and white. The silver is first die-formed from a hollowed-out oval die that I made in wood, fabricated in sterling silver through chasing and repoussé, then I make and solder together the longish sterling silver chain from oval links. I am on the fence about whether I wish to continue using this way of working my jewelry pieces – since I’m very pleased with the way chasing tools permit an endless display of ideas with decorative patterning in metal; however, chasing metal in silversmith’s black pitch is an extremely messy way of working, not to mention the unappealing cleanup that’s involved as I work on both sides of a jewelry piece.
So, as I hang in limbo waiting for the shipper to arrive with my materials, I decided to try out Pinterest, the social media site, where I can now be found as artdoesmatter. I set up categories or “Boards” as they’re called, based on artists I like – metals, ceramics, and fibers. I expect to add painters I like to the fold in due time. I’m curious – how many of you that are makers use Pinterest or follow other artists’ work that you admire on there? Do you use it to showcase or display any of your own work? The image search engine seems extremely easy to use, and I’m enjoying playing around with it. Yet, it can be extremely addicting to browse through the profuse amount of quality images available on essentially any topic. I am looking to connect with more followers on Pinterest, so feel free to add me.