Artist Statement: Jacqueline Riordan

In the early 1990's, I left my 9-year career at IBM to find a new career related to the arts. With technology moving so quickly and the projects I worked on becoming obsolete in a year or so, I wanted to find work that left something more lasting as a results of my efforts. I moved from New York City to San Francisco and immersed myself in various artistic endeavors, finally discovering my love for jewelry design. I happily live and work in San Francisco creating and doing what I love. I hope that these objects I create in metals and stones will last and become artifacts and relics to be enjoyed for generations to come.

Medieval stone-encrusted chalices, boxes, reliquaries and crosses, as well as armor strongly influence my recent work. I use an abundance of multi-colored gemstones scattered over geometric forms and create mesh-like chains of fine silver wire to imply the feeling of elegant armor. These works feel both delicate and precious with the uses of gemstones and the lightness of the hand-crochet work, yet, at the same time elicit the feeling of strength and protection through the use of elements of medieval artifacts and armor.

I attach the delicate hand-crocheted mesh to the heavier sterling with cabochon screws that I create. I also utilize torch enamels, that I have hand-painted in an abstract expressionist manor, as the stones in my work. The scattering of stones, like "Constellations" and the abstract expressionist enamels allows me to introduce a random element that intrigues me.

My objective is to take ancient motifs and techniques and mix them with modern geometric elements in a contemporary context to create a new vocabulary for my own personal expression.

Currently, I am expanding into new creative territory, inspired by puzzle pieces. I find the designs they make on their own through the linking of shapes fascinating. I enjoy playing with the linear patterns the spaces between shapes create. I also have begun to play with creating interactive puzzles where the magnetic pieces I have made can be removed from their jewelry frame. I have many more exciting variations on this theme as well as my medieval inspired collection to be unveiled shortly at my upcoming shows.

I take great pride in my work. I work on each piece to assure the highest level of quality in materials and craftsmanship. I love what I do and put my heart and soul into each piece. The result is a piece that has been uniquely designed and hand finished by the artist. I hope that the wearer will find as much joy in wearing my jewelry as I have enjoyed designing and making it.