Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Artist-made Jewelry with "cold connections"


Assignment for today:

Jewelers, like other artists, are always looking for new ideas. Where better to look that the work of other artists?

Do some research online and find some artist-made jewelry that you like. You should be looking for things that you might be able to make with the techniques we have learned so far (or something similar that looks like you might be able to do).

Experiment with searching for different combinations of "key words". Some words you might use could be: cold connection, rivet, jewelry, pendant, bracelet, earring, necklace, hand-made, artist, etc.

REQUIREMENTS FOR TODAY'S ASSIGNMENT: Find pictures of at least 5 pieces of jewelry that you like, and post links to the pictures by posting a "comment" below. (Make sure that your NAME is attached to your comment!)

Remember, what we are looking for is hand-made jewelry that is made by artists, NOT commercially manufactured jewelry. And, it should be something that you might actually be able to make on your own.

Here are a few more examples:

Note connections: small nuts and bolts.

This ring is formed on a ring mandrel. We have one of these.

Note: on this piece, the pieces of metal are separated by copper tubing, and connected with nuts and bolts.

The main idea of this assignment is just to get inspired!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Assignment: "Prehistoric Venus" Sculpture

The Venus of Willendorf

(click on image for a larger view)

Earlier this year we learned that the small sculpture known as The Venus of Willendorf was, until recently, the oldest known piece of sculpture in existence. A number of other "Venus" sculptures of similar age have been found, some even older. Today, you will do a bit of research about these sculptures in preparation for your next project.

Your next project will be to create a small "Prehistoric Venus" sculpture. You will be using the "subtractive" method, carving your sculpture from a block of plaster.

Assignment for today: do some digging around online to find information about the Venus of Willendorf and other similar prehistoric "Venus" sculptures. Look for written information, and also for pictures. Then, answer the questions below by making a "comment" on this blog post.

To "comment", scroll to the bottom of this post and click on the words "Post a Comment". A window will pop up. Where it says "Choose an identity", select "Name/URL". Write your name in the box next to "Name". (You do not need a URL.) Then, where it says "Leave your comment", type the answers to the questions. Fill in the word verification box, and then press the button for "Publish Your Comment".

Note: if you do not have enough time to answer all then questions below, you may finish this assignment at home tonight (or a.s.a.p. if you were absent today). Also, you will be receiving a handout sheet for your plaster sculpture assignment-- it will have some pictures of Venus sculptures on it, but you might want to print some of your own here in the computer lab or at home.


1. Who was Venus?

2. When was the Venus of Willendorf made?

3. Who made the Venus of Willendorf?

4. Why is it called The Venus of Willendorf?

5. There are a number of other prehistoric Venus sculptures. What is the general range of dates during which these sculptures were made? (example: 500 BC - 200 BC)

6. Look up another prehistoric "Venus" sculpture (similar to the Venus of Willendorf). Compare and contrast: what are the similarities and differences? Be specific.

7. Select another similar prehistoric sculpture, and once again compare and contrast.

8. Why are these prehistoric figurines (small sculptures) referred to as "Venus" sculptures?

9. What do the "experts" think the purpose of these sculptures was?

10. What do YOU think think the purpose of these sculptures was? Do you think they meant to be erotic or "sexy", or do you think they were made for some other reason or purpose?