In anticipation of our one-day trunk show on Saturday, featuring jewelry artist, Liesl Carlson, my associate, Corrie, spent some time getting to know Liesl a little bit better. Liesl has been selling her jewelry at TraillWorks since I opened last year. She and I met during my residency at Peters Valley in 2008. Soon after I left Peters Valley, I learned that she was pregnant, at the same time as me. But, I didn't get to know her very well until her husband, Steve Butler, exhibited his "Breadside Tables" at my old studio down the street, after we both had our sons.
At the time I learned I was relocating my studio to 214 Spring Street where I had more space and the capability to display jewelry, I contacted Liesl and invited her to sell her work. I immediately fell in love and have not only worn her pieces at a variety of functions, but also now own her jewelry. Liesl now lives in Massachusetts with Steve and their two-year old son, Quinn.
|Liesl at work in her sunny studio in Massachusetts|
So, without further adieu, here's a tid-bit more about Liesl and her jewelry-making. You can meet her in person on Saturday from 3 - 8pm at TraillWorks.
Q: How do you choose the stones used in your pieces, and do they “guide” the direction of the piece?
A: Well let's see. Sometimes a stone or object do guide a piece, and sometimes a piece "asks" for a stone. On my bench I always have stones, pottery shards, beads, and some hollow form pieces waiting for the right time or the proper "magic" of the pieces to match up.
Q: What is your work process; how do you begin and how do you know when you are finished with a piece or a collection?
A: I really let the metal tell me what it would like to be. I am really drawn to circles. I also love texture and have a vast collection of hammers that I use to create texture. I also use a rolling mill to imprint texture. I love using all kinds of things from steel mesh to vintage lace ribbon. My recycled group is a freeing process because I really have no control of how it comes out, I can only guide the shape. But it is organic. I have yet to finish a collection, I take pauses.
Q: Where do you draw inspiration: artists, places, colors, sounds, etc?
A: Inspiration. That is a tough one. New England winters is one - with its starkness and bare trees and the sparkle or reflection off the snow and ice. People is one - everything has to feel good. Lately I have a love of medical prints from the late 1800's to the early 1900's. I find them fascinating, and I am working on how to incorporate that into a new collection.
Q: Do you work in any other media?
A: I also do stained glass. I unfortunately have not had the space to set up since we moved back to Mass. I took my first class in 2003.
Q: What are your future goals/plans for your jewelry?
A: I plan on starting to show in the next year or two. Also I would like to teach. My husband, Steve Butler, and I have formed The Blackstone Valley School of Crafts, a multi-media craft school that is looking for a permanent home; we have several locations in mind. It is all very exciting.
Corrie and I would like to thank Liesl for taking the time to let us know a little bit more about her work, and all the preparation she's done in travelling to New Jersey this weekend. TraillWorks would also like to thank "Art Partner", Trinity Restaurant, for providing refreshments.
If you're in the Northern NJ area this weekend, it's a great opportunity to plan to visit TraillWorks. And, if you want to make full day of your visit, there is a self-guided, free studio art tour in Sussex County earlier in the day, Common Thread Studios Art Tour.
I'll leave you with a preview of her display setup for Saturday, from Liesl's blog, along with the necklace Liesl has made that patrons can enter to win! Hope to see you on Saturday.
|Liesl's mock setup in her home for Saturday's trunk show.|
|Sterling Silver Hollow Form Circle Pendant on 16" rubber cord by Liesl Carlson. Saturday's Trunk Show door prize.|