|Lotus Pin or Pendant and Sculpture|
Laura Stamper Designs
Imagination meets art in my world of wearable sculpture. I handcraft every unique piece from porcelain and gemstones; and then set it in precious mixed metals. My jewelry is truly three-dimensional. Many of the pieces are designed to stand as sculpture when not being worn.
|Druzy Crater Ring|
My Artsy Beginnings
I grew up in rural Minnesota, greatly affected by the natural beauty around me. As a child, I was always making things with mud and drawing on walls. Today, my influences are nature and the feminine image. Further, much of my inspiration is rooted in story. Each piece of miniature wearable sculpture has its own personality and its own story to tell.
The Evolution of My Art
My first love is painting and illustrating and I formally studied portraiture. From there, I moved into working in clay sculpture and pottery. I dabbled with small pieces of porcelain jewelry, drawing pictures and glazing the miniatures. Eventually, I took the process one step further and sculpted the porcelain to make the jewelry. As the work evolved, I developed a desire to work with metal and incorporate the porcelain miniatures with more materials.
For several years, I have done sculptural portraits in jewelry. My collectors encouraged me to do celebrities. I enjoy making pieces of iconic beauties from the 30’s, 40’s and 50’s (i.e. Marilyn Monroe, Audrey Hepburn, etc.).
|Icon Ring--Frida Kahlo|
My Process & Materials
I do not, nor have I ever sat down and forced myself to create. I close my eyes, and I see unending possibilities. When I approach a new piece, I think in terms of color, composition, and negative space.
All of my designs are original in concept and execution. My studio assistant helps me with the preparation process and the finishing (polishing and beading).
First, I sculpt the miniatures in fine porcelain. Then, I fire them several times in small kilns, layering the glazes. Next, I marry them with gemstones and other natural materials using fabrication techniques.
The metals that I use in this process are fine and sterling silver, 18k and 22k gold and 24k gold leaf. I am also drawn to unusual materials; such as minerals and rough-cut stones. I feel nature provides beauty far more intriguing than when man gets involved in the process.
In the end, the most common question I get asked is, "Don't you have a hard time parting with them?" The only reason that I do not is that I know each piece is waiting for her human twin. Call me crazy, but "they" tell me who they are and I just provide the hands to help them get here. I also think they know who they are going home with long before I do. It is as if they beckon their future owner, saying, "Look at me! I am part of you!"
|Circles-2 Earrings in Reclaimed Sterling Silver and Copper|
My Artistic Future:
I am moving increasingly toward working with reclaimed metals. This is not only the cosmically correct thing to do, but it opens up another new world of materials and ideas.
|Mixed Reclaimed Metals - Crescent Moon Earrings|
I am sure there must be reincarnation because I will never live long enough to bring to life all the ideas that run through my head!
As for retiring, I hope never! Instead, I hope I am creating until my last breath.
Please visit my website for news and to track my exhibitions scheduled for the year:
You can find Laura Stamper Designs at juried art shows across the nation, through select galleries and through the fine crafts catalog, Uno Alla Volta.
Thank you for reading,