Today is the final day of the first leg of my Ariane Zurcher Jewelry trunk show in New York City. Next week I’m in Chicago and the following week Aspen, Colorado. It’s a – three trunk shows, in three cities, in three weeks – tour!
I’ve written about how I started designing jewelry ‘here‘ and about the genesis of my Transition Collection as a way of finding that elusive “balance” of family and work that so many talk about, but that I never seem to actually achieve, ‘here‘.
I won’t go into any of that again, but like everything in life, it’s impossible to compartmentalize career, family, children and friends into neat little boxes where nothing overlaps with anything else. And even if it were possible, I wouldn’t want to do it. I love that design influences life and life influences design. That these different elements weave together to create something unique is what I respond to when I look at any art, whether it’s a painting, ceramics, sculpture, clothing or jewelry.
18 Kt Brushed White Gold, Druzy and Natural Pearl Ring
My daughter, Emma, has begun writing stories. Those of you who follow my other blog, Emma’s Hope Book, will have likely read some of her writing as I’ve posted it there, with her permission, more and more. What I love about reading her stories is how unexpected they are. Every sentence is a surprise, a tiny, sparkling, gem of an idea, beautifully wrapped up in words that take my breath away.
Recently Emma told me she was interested in jewelry! Before I pack up this trunk show, I plan to ask her to point out a few things she particularly likes. Words and jewels… the apple didn’t fall far…
Inspiration… One of the most common questions I’m asked is – “Where do you get your inspiration?”
I hear it so often, I made a separate page on this blog entitled, Life, which is a collage of images of the people, places and things that inspire me.
I grew up in a house filled with abstract art, both modern and primitive. My father was a curator of pre-Columbian and African Art at the Stanford Museum. He and my mother collected art spanning many cultures and time periods. Our house was often frequented by artists and art dealers from all over the world.
One of my favorite pieces was this wooden sculpture, now on the ranch where my mother lives, in Colorado. It is by a friend of my parents, Francois Stahly. Both Francois and my father had Swiss roots and had lived in Paris. In the 70’s Francois Stahly came to visit us and I remember he and my father sitting outside together, speaking French, at our ranch style home in Northern California, as the fog receded back toward the Pacific Ocean over the foothills.
Nature, art, paintings, sculpture… different languages, different cultures, diversity… this is what inspires me.
This is what makes me happy… Today I live in New York City. A city known for its diversity. The same things that enthralled me as a child, continue to excite and fascinate me now.
One of my favorite New York City haunts is the Highline. I even made a Pinterest Board devoted entirely to it. I love seeing the old rusting tracks of the elevated freight train disappear into native grasses and spring flowers. The juxtaposition of natural beauty with man-made invention, abandoned, aging and transformed by time and life.
Balance. People talk about it all the time. Balancing a career with family. Balancing time, balancing finances, balancing meetings, conference calls, parent/teacher conferences, holidays, ambition… balance… What does that even mean? Who does it well? Does anyone do it well? Or do each of us do the best we can a minute at a time?
Lotus Collection ~ 18 Kt Gold & Sapphire Bracelet
The first collection I put together was the Juno Collection. I created it using hot wax I shot out of a gun on to a form. It was 2007 about three years after my daughter was diagnosed with Autism. About a year after I created the collection I was interviewed and asked, “So do you think this collection represents chaos and what was going on for you at the time?” My immediate response was, “No!” When I thought more about that question, I thought about how that collection represents the beauty of the unknown; I imagine it as a galaxy and the gemstones are stars. It’s about hundreds of threads, people, places, things and how everything intersects and how together we create something complex, intricate and how it’s all interwoven. That interviewers question had me thinking about what inspires us to create. I realized that on a more practical level I needed to create a collection that dealt with balance and to me the essence of balance is in the ability to be flexible. (I struggle with both!) How do we do all we need to do in any given day and not have things fall through the cracks. Is it even possible?
Samadhi/Transitions Collection ~ 18 Kt Gold & Baroque Pearl Earrings with Removable 18 Kt Gold Adornments
I don’t know the complete answer to that, but the partial answer is being flexible. The Transitions Collection was born with exactly this thinking in mind. How could I create a collection of jewelry that met the varied and often disparate needs of a woman who is like me: someone who has a career, children, husband, friends, travels and all that involves? Someone who might need to be at a business meeting and yet have the flexibility to take a sick child to the pediatrician at the drop of a hat. Someone who, in a given day, might need to leave work, go to a friend’s book party or an art opening, before going to the theatre with their husband? Or someone who travels for work, but needs to have a few things that are elegant for various evening functions. What kind of jewelry could I design that would meet those women’s needs and might reflect that kind of diversity in one’s day?
The Transitions Collection was born! It had to be comfortable, the jewelry had to move with you. So I designed it so it became a part of you and you forgot you were wearing it. To achieve this required intricate workmanship. Each piece is hand fabricated and slightly different from the other. You start with a base necklace, bracelet and/or earrings and add beautiful gemstones, a clasp, or extend the necklace so it can be worn over a turtle neck. The bracelet is a bracelet, but it is also an extension to the necklace. A diamond pavé clasp is added to the base necklace and the whole look changes. Flexibility, balance, beauty.
Keeping all of this in mind, I am having a “play date with Jewelry” event here in New York City May 8th & 9th from 11am – 5pm. If you’d like to join me in playing and seeing the Transitions Collection RSVP either by commenting here or through email ~ firstname.lastname@example.org.
Welcome to my store!
Please browse and look at our patterns available. We also offer Workshops! ~Ariane