Saturday, May 28, 2011

JET Interview- Laura Stamper Designs

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.

Mermaid Bracelet

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).

The entire process for each piece consists of multiple steps:
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,


jemsbyjb said...

YOu can find unique pieces and one of a kind designs in this shop. Such a lovely artisan and wonderful works of art.

laurastamperdesigns said...

Norah-great job putting the article together-thank you!

Michele said...

Browsing Laura's shop is amazing with all the unique designs not to be found anywhere else, great shop and feature!!!

Deb Jeffries said...

Laura you are such a fantastic artist and I love your vision! You are so unique and whimsical. Love your shop. This blog is amazing!

JillreOzmay said...

Laura, your work is amazing and this post is inspiring. You are wonderfully talented and connected to your art.

SatinDollCo said...

Laura's shop is amazing! Every piece is like a work of art and so unique. I love how each piece is dimensional. Each time you look at it, you see something new. Keep up the good work,Laura. Norah, great job putting together the article.

Giftbearer said...

I saw this link on Twitter and decided to check it out! Beautiful and unique work! I love 3D sculptural designs. The bracelet with the Kyanite, and the angel are both lovely pieces!

Made By Tammy said...

Laura's shop and pieces are truly Phenomenal! Fantastic feature!

SilverSmack said...

Amazing art and an amazing person~!

SendingLoveGallery said...

Love Laura's work! enjoyed getting to know her better through this feature
: )

trentongal said...

I just love Laura's work! Each piece is so original!

Erika Price said...

Stunning, original work!