Angela Gerhard

2 piece(s) in the gallery

Rusting pipes, vacant factories with broken windows, signage that has been left on the side of the road to deteriorate: these remnants of industrialization are ignored by most. Angela Gerhard sees things differently. Like the Modernist artists, her jewelry is greatly inspired by industrialization. What makes her jewelry distinct from the Modernists is her attention to the industrial age as it is now: decayed.

Gerhard's choice of color and texture for each piece reflect that which inspires her: the red rust from the pipe, the texture of the concrete, the industrial landscape's visible signs of aging. Gerhard also stylistically references the aesthetic formalism employed by Modernist artists, where compositions are comprised of simple lines, colors, and forms. Each pieces of enamel jewelry has basic shapes, primary colors, and lines. Her enamel jewelry pieces truly reveal the industrial age, but instead of showing its majesty, she reveals its current state of decay and neglect. Her artistic sensitivity shows that even these things can be beautiful and are worthy of attention. For Gerhard, each pieces of jewelry is a wearable work of art.

Gerhard makes each piece by fusing vitreous (glass) enamel to metal (typically copper). Her technique varies, sometimes she uses a torch to fuse the glass enamel to metal or she fires it in a kiln. Gerhard starts her process by cutting the metal pieces and forming them into the shapes. After the glass is fused to the metal more layering, etching, and sgraffito, gives the jewelry's surface different colors and textures. By combining the metalworking techniques of the industrial age with her acute sensitivity to the beauty of the industrial decay that surrounds her, Gerhard produces unique and surprising visions for wearable jewelry art.

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