August Gallery Feature
AUGUST 1 – SEPTEMBER 2, 2012
Wednesday August 1, 2012 6pm – 8pm
Join us in the next of our series of First Wednesdays, special events for the Museum of Contemporary Craft community and patrons of The Gallery. These intimate receptions give you the chance to meet our monthly featured artists and get the very first look at their latest work. We’ll have complimentary wine and refreshments on hand, so be sure to stop in and say hello.
San Francisco, CA
How do you layer clothing and jewelry in your daily adornment?
Fueled by the tactile contrasts between the hardness of metal and the softness of fiber, San Francisco-based Raïssa Bump’s jewelry reveals unique qualities of both materials: strength, flexibility, and color. Her pieces merge handwork, such as stitching, weaving, and knotting with industrial production techniques and materials, such as screens. When worn, her jewelry offers a layered effect that reveals the rich histories of personal adornment, which we invite you to experiment with while making your selections in the Gallery at MoCC.
Since earning her BFA from Rhode Island School of Design in 2003 and study in Florence, Italy at Alchimia School of Contemporary Jewelry with Giampaolo Babetto, Bump has built a national reputation for jewelry that combines the hardness of metal with the softness of knitwear, tapping into the human desire to adorn.
How do natural forms shape an artist’s aesthetic?
Sarah Loertscher’s jewelry revolves around the hard-edged yet organic forms of crystalline growth. Her geometric aesthetic relies on simple wire shapes and a variety of techniques to explore the angles and slightly chaotic structures of these natural forms. Raised in Indiana amidst open fields of corn and sweeping skies, the Seattle-based artist credits her minimal aesthetic, in part, on the impact of this expansive yet industrial Midwestern landscape. Simple and elegant, Sarah’s work is being made available to Portland audiences for the first time.
Loertscher earned her BFA in metalsmithing from Ball State University in 2003, followed by a Core Fellowship at Penland School of Crafts in North Carolina, where she expanded her graphic and line-based work.
The Opulent Project
How can production jewelry address conceptual questions?
Working collaboratively as The Opulent Project, Meg Drinkwater and Erin Gardner call attention to our disconnect with how things are made. In “Meet Your Makers,” the duo invites people to think about what is most important to them about jewelry: the role of the designer/maker, machine-like perfection, or visible marks of hand-making processes? Installed side-by-side across a wall, the placement of dozens of pairs of earrings across a surface reveals the productive side of imperfection in a visual display that morphs as purchases are made and spots become vacant. As you make your selections, you may see differences between the available pairs that are otherwise invisible elements of production
processes – making your selections unique, too.
The Opulent Project was founded in 2007 as Meg and Erin completed the BFA program in Jewelry and Metalsmithing at the University of Oregon. From their Old Town/Chinatown studio in Portland, the collaborators use jewelry to explore the cultural disconnect in a society that places value on the handmade object without understanding making processes at the studio or production scale.
How does technology inspire new forms of adornment?
Today, iPod earbuds are as visible and common as earrings. Portland-based
Allison Ullmer uses such disposable, mass-produced items as a springboard to consider new cultural forms of adornment. Rather than repurpose technological parts, Allison renders their forms through the classical, time-consuming process of stonecarving. Replacing the gemstone with a new kind of stone form, her rings merge tradition and technology, resulting in new, hybrid forms of contemporary jewelry. This body of work, available for the first time in Portland, was part of her MFA thesis.
Based in Portland, Allison Ullmer’s work has been shown nationally and internationally, most recently at the Marzee 2011 International Graduate Show in the Netherlands and the Crafts National 2012 Exhibit at the Mulvane Art Museum in Kansas. She earned her BFA from the University of Oregon, and an MFA from SUNY, New Paltz.
How does the way jewelry is worn relate to natural phenomena?
Focusing on Cordyceps, a form of parasitic fungus that afflicts insects, Stephanie Webster employs the way in which a brooch is worn by a “host” to expose parasitic social behavior. Using the natural world as inspiration, and social behavior as motivation, Webster creates work that reveals fractures in the social fabric, portable memorials to the effects of parasitic behaviors. The brooches, available for you to “host” for yourselves, originally comprised Stephanie’s installation titled “Ego induced fracture in the social fabric.”
She earned her BFA in Jewelry and Metal Arts at California College of the Arts after studying Metals and Painting at North Seattle Community College.