Sunday, August 15, 2010


I've been working with small linear sculptural forms for the past five or six years, having transitioned away from casting and welding metals to create without heat, using simple cold joining methods.

Making larger shapes with the same materials and techniques I use in my jewelry has been a natural progression. It suits me to work spontaneously. I love the immediacy of realizing an idea without moving through various stages of a slower process. It's like drawing in space to create a new reality.

Lately though, I've imagined sculptural pieces that will present some different challenges. As a graduate student and later when I taught art, I often worked larger in wood, stone, clay, fibers, metals, and plastics. Now I'm thinking of using some of these materials again, but in new ways.

Before cold joining, casting and welding made joinery easy. I remember it was a little awkward making the transition from heat to cold methods, beginning to visualize using new skills. I've riveted, stapled, folded, wrapped, snapped, glued, and sewn.

Now as an artist still in transition, the thought of increasing the size and range of my work once again is exciting. Moving back to my roots in sculpture, I'm also beginning to discover the impact on my jewelry designs. This time my new ideas will take form from methods and techniques evolved over time and inspired by intuition.

It will be an exploration, building on what I already know.
Rather than looking outside for someone to show me more skills, I've reached a point where advances in my creative vision suggest going deeper inside to create very personal solutions. To realize my own changing voice as an artist, the emphasis is on my design idea rather than how I achieve it.

Please read how other Handmade Division Team members view the issues of creating, skills, and techniques:

NEDbeads, Lisa Hopkins Design, Jewelry by Natsuko,
Beth Cyr, Abhaya Fibers, Purified Art, Nova of Sweden,
Bella-Bijou Jewellery, Pink Crow Studio, Sand Fibers,
Alice Istanbul, Thomasin Durgin, Moxie & Oliver,
Andes Cruz,
Tosca Teran, Delias Thompson.


Anonymous said...

yay!!!! bigger sculpture is something I'd like to move into too - like really "big" jewellery. :) You are so eloquently written Jan, I love your posts :) I can't wait to see what you create!

Thomasin Durgin said...

Wonderful post, Jan! Aren't we always artists in transition? That's my hope for myself, anyhow, otherwise I stagnate. As always, Ii look forward to your new work. xo

Jan said...

Hey Ande! Adventures in artistic expression! :) I've loved working small, what I call "miniature" as in miniature paintings. Jewelry became more and more like miniature sculpture for me. Here I am today making miniature sculptures. I never expected this when I was working in measurements of feet, not inches! back to "bigger"! :)

Jan said...

Thanks, Tomi! I really enjoy the monthly blog topics. Having to put my wondering thoughts into some kind of coherency makes me look where I've been and where I'm going!

And then I love catching a glimpse of everyone else! :) We see each other in our work, but a whole new dimension comes out in the blogs.

I see your daily dynamic and exciting!!! xo

jewelrybynatsuko said...

I love how you say "It's like drawing in space to create a new reality"... wonderful post as usual! I enjoy reading it every month:)

NEDbeads said...

Oh I just loved your blog!! I am a new follower - and so glad to be!! I adore all of your art, and now am waiting with baited breath for the newer and bigger sculptures!! Have a fantastic weekend.

novadesigns said...

what a wonderful and inspiring post!
So nice to get to know all of you better.

Jan said...

Thanks so much, Natsuko, Nancy, and Tess! I really appreciate your comments and support.

Just came from reading your posts. :) The variety of ideas expressed is wonderful.

Bill Martin said...

There is nothing like coming up with a solution on your own and just sitting back and saying... thats it!
My first 2 years of college were based on problem solving and solutions and I am thankful for that foundation. Great post!

Jan said...

Thanks, Bill! I see the powerful clarity expressed in your work that comes of taking on the issues and finding your individual solution. It's one of the ways we can get to a statement that's perhaps fresh and unexpected.

But I certainly believe in getting all the basic skills you want to expand your range! We use everything when it comes to the piece we're working on.

Lisa Hopkins said...

Such a thoughtful post. Your work is beautiful I look forward to seeing your larger sculptures.

Jan said...

Thanks, Lisa! Facing the thought of a major shift in my work is exciting. It's a direction I've been heading in for a long time without being really conscious of it. Seems obvious to me now though! :)

scolarichris said...

Beautiful, like a small cosmos.

Jan said...

C'est la réalité (l'univers) dans ma tête.

Merci, Chris, and welcome to my blog! :)