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  • Atelier Zobel Atelier Zobel
  • Linda Priest Linda Priest
  • Ornella Iannuzzi Ornella Iannuzzi
  • Jacqueline Cullen Jacqueline Cullen

The idea for the ‘Genius of Nature’ show sprang from two different events:  the bird portraits of photographer Eliot Porter’s in Trisha Donnelly’s ‘Artist Choice’ show at MOMA and goldsmith Michael Good’s lecture on his process of working in metal. These very different moments shared something grand in common: the idea that creation is not happenstance, but patterned in a random way, or perhaps random in a patterned way.  The MOMA exhibition noted that Porter’s “art reflects a deep interest in the underlying structures of the universe. He uses the act of close looking associated with photography to create studies in chaos.”

Chaos and structure, randomness and pattern: these opposites capture the magic of handmade objects. In the world of artist-made jewelry, the goldsmith’s plan intersects with the unexpected—the heat of the torch, the movement of the gold, the energy of the universe -- at the moment of creation, resulting in a work that is beyond design. To believe Michael Good, goldsmithing is the same act of creation as a plant growing or the universe expanding: it is organic, cosmic and perfectly natural. 

The works curated for this exhibition look to capture this sense of the organic, of the expanding, of the not-quite-planned, as well as featuring jewels that relate more to nature’s inspiration on a graphic or visual level. It was important to include established and emerging artists and the collection ranges from the unexpected to the more familiar.  In all of these artists’ works, one can discern that magical energy of creativity, pattern and randomness converging, the artists’ attempt perhaps to capture something universal in a single remarkable jewel.

---Patricia Kiley Faber
Exhibition Curator


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