Amy’s first jewelry experience was enameling a piece of metal at summer camp when she was about ten years old. That was the most amazing thing she had done or seen and she was hooked. She went to a liberal arts college in Chicago where she focused on jewelry, fashion and costume design. It was there that she realized her passion for three dimensional arts and personal adornment.
Graduate school in New York offered her a background in the history of art. Introduced to period styles through fashion and the decorative arts she embraced the Arts and Crafts and Art Nouveau styles, apparent in her work today. Living in those major cities as well as Washington, DC strengthened her love of architecture and realism which can be seen in the miniature houses and castles she also creates.
A few years ago Amy and her husband moved to Asheville in the beautiful mountains of Western North Carolina. There she has become a full time artist and teacher of precious metal clay.
Creating jewelry is my favorite means of self-expression, and sharing it with others gives it purpose and meaning. Personal adornment has always fascinated me, especially how it has evolved throughout history. The fashions we wear speak to our personality and our inner sense of who we are, whether it is the clothes we dress in or the jewelry and accessories we choose.
My jewelry is inspired by styles from the turn of the 20th century: predominantly Arts and Crafts, focusing on handmade items and Art Nouveau which embodies flowing lines, nature and an appreciation for beauty. My pieces are also influenced by my love of architecture and miniatures because I believe that objects altered from their original size provide a sense of magic and wonder. These pieces are modern heirlooms. Made with a passion for design and detailed execution, the pieces are infused with the appeal of a rare treasure from the past. PMC (Precious Metal Clay) is my material of choice because of its transformative properties. It starts out as clay which allows me to use techniques like slab construction and carving, and after firing in a kiln, traditional metal techniques like hammering and soldering. The process of working with a material that goes through so many stages is challenging and allows me to have a very personal connection with each completed piece.
Cutting edge technology meets the arts with a new way to work with metal. Precious Metal Clay (PMC) is composed of microscopic particles of metal, suspended in an organic binder. It creates a material that has the feel and working properties of clay. The artist can then design and form the material using tools that give shape, texture, and character. The objects are dried and placed in a kiln where they are heated to temperatures approaching the melting point of the metal. A wonderful transformation then takes place. As the binder fires away, you are left with a piece of pure, fine silver, metal jewelry.
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