From the earliest human history there is evidence of crafted objects used for adornment. Humans use personal ornaments to record momentous events, to express individuality and to identify with belief systems. Jewelry made of durable materials can last for generations and the ability to touch someone on an intimate level for more than one’s own lifetime seems the ultimate goal of the artist. I think of jewelry as one of the most intimate and personal forms of art as it can be worn on the body and accompany one through life’s journey. My ambition with all my pieces is to aid in forming a deeper connection to nature, the planet, and the mystery of the Divine.
Primordial references the source of the metal and stones I use in my work and also a return to the beginning in my own conception of jewelry, when I felt free to question everything and the possibilities seemed limitless. Formation is a geologic term which defines the lithostratigraphic location of the materials which I manipulate into wearable art. The actual creation of the work and the ultimate collection of finished pieces I also think of as a formation.
For me, Primordial Formation describes that which has been shaped by elemental forces. Early philosophers explained the basic components that made up the universe in terms of five classical elements; earth, air, fire, water and spirit/ether. I represent each of these elements through individual collections of jewelry. The pieces integrate sterling, fine silver, raw and hand-cut gemstones. My exhibit is a personal investigation into the ideas of permanence and intransience and how they relate to the brief human lifespan. I am fascinated by the idea of metal and stones having existed in some form since the beginning of creation. My work explores these concepts with the intention of creating pieces that last beyond the lifetime of a single wearer.
Geology and the theory of deep time has brought a strange comfort to my own philosophical musings; the knowledge that the earth will carry on with its complex processes long after human civilization has crumbled into dust. There is something soothing in the amount of time that has come before us and the inference that a similar amount of time will elapse after we are gone. Since this world view has crept into my consciousness, the minutia of modern life grows ever more trivial, nonsensical and fleeting. Only the solid bones of the earth seem to have any real meaning or permanence.
Stones and metal have always served as a conduit for me to connect on a spiritual level with the earth and the natural world. Through my work I strive to communicate some part of the joy and fulfillment this connection brings to my life. The biomorphic forms of the cast metal comprised in each piece are intended to help the viewer/wearer relate to the origin of both the metal and stone elements and ourselves. The differences between humans and the inanimate elements of the earth seem too great to have any relationship and yet we share the same source, the primordial ocean of life.
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