Every day I get to come to work and create beautiful things, and jewelry is one of them.
I believe that art should evoke an emotion, a feeling - it should elicit conversation, and tell a distinct story. I love telling stories through two specific mediums - jewelry, and dance.
During my intense dance years, and when I was first learning the craft of choreography, I found the most compelling pieces for me were ones that left me breathless with emotion, where dancers (including myself!) related to each other with happiness, heartbreak, hunger, where I was left wanting more. My connection was with the stories that were told through the passion of the movement. This pure human emotion spurs all my creative work-- in my choreography, in my teaching, and especially, in my jewelry.
Music, dance, painting, jewelry - I tell my dance students that an audience, upon leaving the performance or the gallery, wants to feel something. I apply that lesson to my jewelry.
For my inspirations, I use my personal stories to create cohesive collections, with symbology and motifs that evoke specific imagery. My stories transcend the materials in a manner I can't always explain, but I know my audience feels it and experiences it in their own way - they frequently gush with emotion because the piece is associated with a special and deep meaning. The jewelry marks an important event, or reminds them of someone significant. With my art, whether it's dance or jewelry, I am able to connect with people in a profound fashion.
As a jewelry artist, I spend hours alone in my workroom, surrounded mainly by my tools and my imaginative thoughts. Expression in jewelry, or choreography, is so much easier for me than words. However, my art compels me to step outside of my creative comfort zone and connect with people in a language that goes beyond words. That result of that personal connection, and I admit that the steps it takes to get there I face with uncertainty and trepidation, is the sustanance that keeps me creating more.
Everyone deserves to feel good about themselves. When a person connects with my art, with a storytelling approach through form and movement, the feeling becomes mutual. It truly is as beneficial to me as it is to them.
I want people to feel something when they first see the jewelry, when they first put it on, and when they own it, wearing it proudly.
Art consumed me as a child. I started making jewelry early on, using found objects, like beads from my mother’s sewing kit and stripped wire from twist ties. In those days, I knew no parameters, and I used whatever was at hand, like plastic tomato baskets, bottle caps, fabric scraps and shirtboard. Later I took a metals class offered as part of the art program in high school, introducing me to the professional aspects of jewelry design. I can't express enough how exciting it was for the first time being able to create something out of silver....and gold!!
Simultaneously, I dreamed of being a dancer, and in pursuit of the stage and performing, I moved to Boston and later New York. I performed professionally in ballet, musical theatre, and flamenco. During this time, jewelry design waited in the wings.
While the east coast set the stage for inspiration and transition to jewelry, coming back to Texas spurred the desire to create a lifestyle and profession that I could cultivate around my growing young son’s busy schedule. I took my jewels and tool box out of storage and began joyarte. I enrolled again in metalsmithing classes at the local art school and polished up my skills. In 2003, I created my first collection of 10 pieces and sold to the local boutiques and displayed it in galleries.
Jewelry is now front and center for me, and my life’s work. I continue to be influenced by my experiences and travels--the passion and fluidity of dance, the energy and architecture of New York, the flavors and colors of Boston, the drama and flair of fashion, the history and culture of my heritage, mixed with the grounding balance of family, my students, and nature.
As my business has grown, I’ve had some accomplishments too!
All joyarte jewelry is made by hand in the U.S. I use precious and semi-precious stones, natural materials, and fine metals. In addition to my collections, my team and I also do custom pieces.
My customers frequently choose a piece that connects them to a special date, a significant event, or an association with a special person--moments in time that create their personal story. I love being part of people’s lives in this way--that the jewelry has the power to help relive those moments again and again.
What special moment will my jewelry connect for you?