Friday, March 16, 2007

Why I wire wrap

Wire wrapping. . .I was drawn to the process because it creates works that are one of a kind. Are there machines that do this? Can anybody tell me? For me, going to Target or the Jewelery District downtown (Los Angeles, CA) and getting a glob of manufacture metal and chips of stone like product just doesn't get.

I want stones and glass that have been rolled in the palm of someone's hands as they imagined how the living earth will unite with a living being. The concrete and conceptual. Heaven and earth. I want wire metal made malleable by the warmth of blood pulsing through veins and distributed to soft yet strong flesh.

I want designs that call me from the past and project me to the future.

That is why I wire wrap.

This cuff was inspired initially by Eni Oken's work. It also was inspired by the concept of Sankofa--a symbolic bird of Ghana that flys forward while looking back.

I didn't have a bracelet mandrel so I used a piece of PVC pipe to mold the base.

First step was to wrap 20 gage copper wire around the pipe 9 time. Then I divided the 9 wire loops into 3 sections, a top, a bottom and a center frame shaped into an oval and sandwiched in the middle. With 18 gage wire I wrapped the entire frame, squeezing the center back so that top and bottom frame meet.

Another length of 18 gage wire narrows the back of the cuff to a whisper. This is the place where memories are so ancient we don't even understand them anymore.

Then I began with the loops and the swirls and the twist, all created in 20, 22, and 18 gage wire. I left the center frame blank a wonderful negative space waiting to tell me how to fill it. This negative space represents the present and the future waiting for memories to be lived.

When the future and the present came to me it was in the form of red jasper. So I caught the three nuggets in copper wire cages. Not to imprison them but just to tether them for a moment until I can catch up with the present and past. More swirls, cooper beads and crystals, so that. . .

I Wear My Memories . . .
. . . here. . . on the pulse of my body, at my wrist or at the top of my arm close to my heart.
The cooper wire swirls and coils are like the arteries of my body, pulsating, alive with memories. . .living to make more memories.
The open spaces of this cuff, where the jasper treasures reside are also open for the possibility of new memories to take root.
The crystals are conductors of light that radiates my energy to and from the cuff.
I wear my memories here. . .with this cuff.

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