Booth #: GS31
Susan Elnora Armstrong is drawn to imagery that reflects a connection to spirit, awareness, curiosity, and playfulness. Her work explores the idea that, beyond the role of adornment, jewelry can act as a visual and tactile manifestation of memories, dreams, and intentions. Jewelry can serve as a powerful symbol of personal mythos, as well as a reminder to cultivate presence and openness. Susan’s work, while often stirring unique individual associations, also tends to point to our essential connectedness and a certain shared experience of the world.
All pieces are initially hand-fabricated by Susan from sterling silver or gold. Most shapes are sawed out, then refined with tiny files, and the pieces are forged, assembled, and soldered together. She often textures and oxidizes her work to bring out its delicate details and sculptural dimensionality. A supporter of conscious sustainability, Susan uses recycled metals and responsibly sourced gems.
Susan was introduced to metalsmithing as an undergraduate in Studio Art at Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota. She attended Revere Academy of Jewelry Arts in San Francisco, after which she was employed for several years as a goldsmith for Master Goldsmith Stephen Vincent in Minneapolis. When she set out on her own in 2009, she spent several years in New Mexico, which remains influential on her work. Her interest in the West as the essence of American mythology is a continuing source of inspiration. While her training and experience ranges widely, from traditional goldsmithing and stone-setting methods, to machining and gem-setting in stainless steel, Susan remains firmly grounded in her preference for working directly with precious metals by hand.