Utica Uptown Downtown Art Fair 2015

I can’t believe it has almost been a year, since I wrote my last post. Of course there has been a lot going on and there has been some progress in the studio but things have slowed down due to a little addition to the family.

However, it’s that time of the year again… the time of the Third Utica Uptown Downtown Art Fair. Just like last year, I will be showing alongside some amazing makers from the Utica area and I am very excited to participate again. This time around, ProonK will be showing at the 4 Elements Studio, an awesome artist space that is run by ceramicist Vartan Poghosian. 4 Elements Studio is located on the top floor of a prior school building on Washington Street and Vartan rents out additional rooms to other artists that also love the fresh artistic breeze that is blowing trough a revitalized Downtown Utica. If my studio was not downtown already, the ProonK Studio just recently moved to Elizabeth Street, I would have loved to be part of Vartan’s artist collective. The space is truly special with it’s old school vibe and cute little studios.

Next to 4 Elements Studio, more than 15 artists are going to show in three additional spaces: The Other Side Gallery, Sculpture Space and Oneida Square Project Public Art & Design.

Participating artists are:

@Sculpture Space:
Kim Carr-Valdez
Paul Valdez

@ 4 Elements Studio:
Vartan Poghosian
Victor Lenuzza
Celeste Friend
Art Baird
Cynthia Baird
Shannon Stockbridge
Rosette Schureman
Kathy Donovan
Steve Nyland
Marc Tucci
Betty Murtagh
Proonk Jewellery

The Other Side Gallery and the Oneida Square Project Public Art & Design will show a wide selection of local artists featuring ceramics, photography, paintings, prints, drawings and mosaic products for business and home.

Here is the official poster with directions and all the fabulous artists:

utica uptown downtown art fair 2015

I would very much like to encourage everyone who is interested in going to try to make it to all four locations, since there is a great chance to win a raffle prize made by the artists.

The show will be held on November 28th and 29th from 10am-5pmwww.uticaartfair.com

Thank you for reading.

Feel free to follow this blog.
Please have a look at my websites www.lisa-juen.com and www.proonk.com.
Please follow me on Twitter @LisaJuenProonK and like my FB ProonK page.

Utica Uptown Downtown Art Fair 2014

After a long period of silence, very exciting news!

Sixteen artists from the Utica area would like to invite you to join the ‘Utica Uptown Downtown Art Fair‘ this Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 29-30 from 10am-5pm.

This annual event, that is now in its second year, gives people from the public the possibility to experience the artists’ studios and their creativity at work.

The featured artists are:

Uptown

Keiko Soga – Paper Jewelry & Reliefs
Yaosen at 18 Auburn Avenue

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Takashi Soga – Sculpture & Drawings
Yaosen at 18 Auburn Avenue

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Celeste Friend – Sterling Silver Jewelry
37 Emerson Avenue

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Art Baird – Pottery
37 Emerson Avenue

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Cynthia Baird – Handwoven Clothing and Accessories
37 Emerson Avenue

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Sylvia de Swaan – Photography
19 Rose Place

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Tony Thompson – Paintings
The Other Side – 2011 Genesee Street

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George White – Sculpture
The Other Side – 2011 Genesee Street

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Downtown

Betty Murtagh (represented by Gina Murtagh) – Silkscreen Prints
519 Plant Street

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Lisa Juen – Contemporary Jewelry
519 Plant Street

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Vartan Poghosian – Ceramic Art
4 Elements Studio at 617 Tracy Street

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Victor Lenuzza – Oil Paintings
4 Elements Studio at 617 Tracy Street

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Marc Anthony Polizzi – Sculpture
Upstate Flux at 920 Columbia Street

Stephanie Wysluzaly – Pottery
Upstate Flux at 920 Columbia Street

Steve Nyland – Paintings
Upstate Flux at 920 Columbia Street

Jon Petro – Abstract Painting
Mayro Building – 239 Genesee Street

Come and join us! …and don’t forget to bring your Christmas shopping list!

For more information check out the Utica Uptown Dowtown Art Fair Facebook Page or their blog.

See you there!

Thank you for reading.

Feel free to follow this blog.
Please have a look at my websites www.lisa-juen.com and www.proonk.com.
Feel free to follow me on Twitter @LisaJuenProonK and like my FB ProonK page.

Sir Ken Robinson: Does School Kill Creativity?

A lot of people might know about this video already. However, I stumbled over it this morning and I thought it is still worth sharing. I find it very mind-provoking and it got me thinking about the way I was educated in school. Given that I was robbed the chance to study art as a main subject in my final and most crucial years of school (because of a lack of student interest, so they never formed a class) and I had to concentrate on maths instead, I find myself wondering sometimes how things would have shaped out if I had had the chance to participate in those specialised classes. It is true that schools and school teachers might not necessarily be able and find the time to concentrate on a student’s individual needs and nurture their particular interests. So how much potential is really wasted and how many children never really get the chance to truly do what they were born to do? All that is being created is a mass of stereotypes.

Take Picasso for example. I am not sure how well he did in school or if he even went to school. All I know is that he obviously had a huge talent but so do a lot of kids. The difference is that on top of his talent, his interests were recognised. He was allowed to nurture his creativity and he was trained in the right direction from the very start. His family gave him the chance to develop his potential, rather than pushing him into stencils that society thinks are right.

Here is Sir Ken Robinson‘s TED talk and his views on the topic: ‘Do Schools Kill Creativity?’

To end this post, here is one of my favourite quotes by Pablo Picasso, which was also mentioned in the video:

‘All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.’

Thank you for reading.

Feel free to follow this blog.
Please have a look at my websites www.lisa-juen.com and www.proonk.com.
Feel free to follow me on Twitter @LisaJuenProonK and like my FB ProonK page.

Ideas to Materials in Contemporary Jewellery

Here is another video ‘Conversations about Contemporary Jewellery: Ideas to Materials‘ that interviews contemporary jewellery makers on their processes, ideas and materials in their work.

I always find it very fascinating to hear where other artists come from and what makes them thrive.

If you would like to read up on contemporary artists’ studio practices, check out the book ‘Jewellery Design and Development: From Concept to Object‘ by Norman Cherry (also read my post: ‘Reading 1: Amy Tavern & Inspiration in Books‘) It feels like one is sitting next to the artists looking over their shoulder when reading the book.

Thank you for reading.

Feel free to follow this blog.
Please have a look at my websites www.lisa-juen.com and www.proonk.com.
Feel free to follow me on Twitter @LisaJuenProonK and like my FB ProonK page.

Art & Environment: A Sense of Place

I woke up very early this morning, so I thought it would be wise to use the extra time to do some research on possible future work developments. Things still haven’t completely unraveled in my mind but there is a glimpse of direction coming through. I find that I am very fascinated with the relationship in between humans and nature. How humans influence and manipulate nature and how nature fights to get back what is hers. There are several directions I would like to experiment with in the near future. They might or might not relate to each other. But even if they don’t, I think it can be very interesting to juxtapose the objects, since the topic of human and nature is very diverse and controversial in itself and it can be seen from a lot of different angles.

During my research this morning, I stumbled over a very recent blog-post of a fellow jeweller friend, Melissa Cameron, and I thought it would be great to share her post ‘A Meditation on Place’. The post features a video called: ‘Conversations about Contemporary Jewellery: Locating Place’.

As you might know, the influence of place plays a big role in my work and I can relate very well with what is being said in the interviews. Being born in Germany, having studied in the UK, having worked in Shanghai, China and now living in the USA has filled my mind with the strangest habits, cultures and influences, which can clearly be seen in my different bodies of work. Still, sometimes it is hard to find the self in it all, especially (as mentioned in the video) in addition to the internet that offers the world on a fingertip. I do agree though that by the end of the day, the culture and influences of one’s upbringing and home country are the ones that take the lead in defining who one is and what one has to say. It is as Helen Britton mentions when she says that if she had to choose in between Germany and Australia, she would have to go with Australia. Living in a foreign country helps to get the needed distance and a new perspective on the home country. It helps to focus and the new influences of a foreign country can be a great addition to the creative thinking process. I am happy to be living in the USA but if one asked me to make a choice, I am not sure I could be without Germany. I find this relationship in between art and upbringing very fascinating. Those early years shape how we see, understand and read things and deep down, they influence it all.

Thank you for reading.

Feel free to follow this blog.
Please have a look at my websites www.lisa-juen.com and www.proonk.com.
Feel free to follow me on Twitter @LisaJuenProonK and like my FB ProonK page.

ProonK Mother’s Day Sale & Memphis Metal Museum

I have great news times two today! Especially for everyone who is still looking for the perfect Mother’s Day gift.

#1: From today until May 12, ProonK will have a Mother’s Day SALE online at the ProonK Etsy Store. 10% of the item price will be discounted when entering the Promo Code ‘MothersDay14’ during checkout. Also, keep in mind that worldwide shopping is free!

#2: ProonK Jewellery will be available at the Memphis Metal Museum Shop soon! I am super excited about the possibility to show there. Please go and have a look, if you’re in Memphis!

button earrings lime green, gem green hand‘Lace Button’ Earrings, 999 Fine Silver, Enamel, Lime Green & Gem Green

button earrings periwinkle, raspberry hand‘Lace Button’ Earrings, 999 Fine Silver, Enamel, Periwinkle & Raspberry

button ring royal blue nile green hand‘Lace Button’ Ring, 999 Fine Silver, Enamel, Royal Blue & Cascade Blue

chili earrings grass green hand‘Lace Chili’ Earrings, 999 Fine Silver, Enamel, Spring Green

button necklace turquoise, cascade blue hand‘Lace Button’ Earrings, 999 Fine Silver, Enamel, Turquoise & Nile Green

Happy spring everyone and have a lovely Mother’s Day!

Thank you for reading.

Feel free to follow this blog.
Please have a look at my websites www.lisa-juen.com and www.proonk.com.
Feel free to follow me on Twitter @LisaJuenProonK and like my FB ProonK page.

My sister’s wedding bands

A few weeks ago, my sister got married! It was a very joyous occasion for the entire family, so I felt especially happy last year when she had asked me to make her wedding bands.

She wanted to have simple bands, nothing that would stand out too much but nothing too usual either. There needed to be something special about them on a more subtle level. In Germany, it is not usual that women still wear their engagement rings after the wedding. Usually they only wear the actual wedding band after the ceremony, so big stones are not necessarily common.

She did some research herself in shops and found a pair of rings that she really liked. She described the overall look to me: The ring was made from two differently coloured rings that were fused into each other. So, I started making.

As mentioned before in my post ‘Making Wedding Bands’, wedding bands are not supposed to be made with any kind of solder line or opening. A ring made that way is said to be bad luck, since it is not continuous. At some point it might break and so might the marriage. So, it should be made in one piece. The most common thing to do is to work with castings.

I started off carving the ring models out of wax and I sent them to a caster. A few weeks later, I received four rings: Two made from 18K Greengold for the inside rings and 14K Whitegold for the outside rings.

After cleaning and polishing the casts, I had to fuse the rings into each other. It was the first time that I tried to do this, so I was not quite sure how to encounter the issue. I was especially concerned with maintaining the right ring size. But a few attempts later, everything worked out and they were perfect!

So, here they are: My sister’s wedding bands!

sara wedding bands1small

sara wedding bands3smallRings made from 18K Greengold and 14K White Gold.

My sister and her husband loved them! Please let me know what you think!

Thank you for reading.

Feel free to follow this blog.
Please have a look at my websites www.lisa-juen.com and www.proonk.com.
Feel free to follow me on Twitter @LisaJuenProonK and like my FB ProonK page.