On March 23, 2014, a dream of ours came true. Since we both have wonderful jobs, we are able to invest in the arts around the Twin Cities. March 23 marked our first joint membership to the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis. A joint membership, at $70, gives us free admission to all the galleries for a year, helps support the Sculpture Garden (my very first immersion into art as a child) and special invitations to events. The dream was to give back: to continue to give the Sculpture Garden to generations of little rural Minnesotans with fairy tale dreams of living in the city one day.
Joel and I have lived in Plymouth since 2011, and we have missed the Jewelry Artist Mart, held in early May at the Walker Art Center, for 2 years because we didn’t have the money to attend. The Jewelry Artist Mart is, according to the Walker Art Center; “more than 25 local and regional artists as they showcase their original, hand-crafted jewelry designs in a rich variety of materials and styles.” This year, the Mart was held on May 3. Earlier that week, I received an invite to this event. Because I am a member of the Walker, we could go in one hour early and receive free mimosas and “while browsing, sip Catalyst, our new Walker-crafted coffee, and enjoy tastes of B.T. McElrath’s chocolates.”
I was so excited to go. At every art fair, I always purchase one piece of uniquely crafted jewelry. I love one-of-a-kind piece jewelry, and intersperse them with all my other accessories from JCPenney, Lane Bryant or Target. I’ll admit I wore a nice outfit because I knew I would be out of my element in this arena, but I had no idea how out of my element I was. Usually, I wear an item of clothing with the words Red Sox on it on Saturdays. That day, I wore a nice sparkly pink top, followed by a sheepish Joel, wearing a Sherlock T-shirt, under a plaid over-shirt.
I bounded in, and grabbed two mimosas in REAL glasses, that should have been the first sign, and handed one to Joel. He stood in the middle with one other male in a plaid shirt, who was drinking a cup of coffee and both began texting on their cell phones.
Being uncomfortable, I downed my first mimosa and moved onto my second, I was pretty unsure on my feet. I fell in love with necklaces made by the jewelry artist: Adrea Beres. You can find her work at www.theAmethystGrove.com. The piece I would have bought that day, would have been this one:
It was incredibly priced for its beauty, but that meant it was far out of our price range. I grabbed her card, and you can read about Adrea at the above address, who is a full time social worker. This completely changed my perception of her work. First of all, the first time I spoke with her I was TERRIFIED of knocking over her work, and I made a joke about yeah, “fill me up with a few mimosas and launch me at priceless jewelry I can break, good idea.” She laughed at my fumbling fingers. I grabbed her card, and said I would be in touch when we have a bit more money. The second time I spoke with her, I brought Joel over in hopes of him seeing the item I wanted for Christmas. Let’s face it; Joel’s a dolt in these types of situations. I was trying to say, look at this, buy this for me for Christmas. No recognition crossed his face.
Anyway, back to Adrea, as I have internet stalked her, I realized, I was drawn to her work because she believes her work is: “Jewelry for those that still believe in fairy tales.” We truly have the same mentality. She works full time, and her real life is her art. We are of the same sisterhood.
Here is another sample of her work:
I was drawn to another artist’s work because of it’s delicacy. Annika Kaplan:
Much like other art forms, pictures just don’t do the intricacy and delicacy justice. Each is a one-of-a-kind, beautiful piece of art and not something I would feel comfortable wearing. I’m not delicate or gentle; I’m a bull in a china shop. I’m loud, I say whatever comes to mind without thinking, and no matter how hard I try to blend in, I just don’t, naturally.
You can find Annika’s work at: http://annikakaplanjewelry.com. In the “About” her section, we find out she has a small studio in South Minneapolis
After studying jewelry design and fabrication at the Savannah College of Art and Design and the Minneapolis Community and Technical College, Annika Kaplan set up shop in a small South Minneapolis studio. Influenced by nature and folk traditions, she produces highly wearable and unique jewelry made by hand mostly from sterling silver, brass, 14kt & 18kt gold, and semiprecious gems.
It does not say if she is a full time artist, or a member of the sisterhood of Adrea and myself. I didn’t ask the artist that question, instead I complemented her on how delicate and amazing her work was.
She replied, “It’s funny because I wear such large jewelry, and I make such delicate jewelry.” She looked uncomfortable talking to me, as I would have been in that situation, and I grabbed a card and walked away. But I just couldn’t get what she said out of my head. I returned to her and asked, “Do you make such intricate jewelry and delicate jewelry because you wish or want to be able to be more like a person who would wear it?”
Shocked that I would ask such a question, her response was that “I have small hands and male buyers are willing to purchase something smaller for their partner because it is easiest to match.” I’m still rattled by that answer. I realize I surprised her with my radically loud bluntness, but I also didn’t think what a piece of work her art would mean to a person. The delicacy of the art would make the piece one could and would wear every day, even in the shower. The only piece I wear like this is my wedding ring. When I have to take it off to swim or cook, I no longer feel like myself. Wearing one of Annika’s pieces would be like that, It would become a person’s essence. Annika is creating small jewelry that can hold the essence of the person inside. Perhaps she believes in Fairy Tales like Adrea and myself.
The Walker Art Center holds the Jewelry Artist Mart every year. Until then, you can find a list of the artists that appeared at the exhibit at: Walker Art Center. I strongly recommend you check out the amazing work and find the artist that inspires you to continue your own art and your own fairy tale.