Instructor: Luana Coonen

Born and raised in Hawaii, I have an undeniable connection with nature, it's in

my blood. Raised my mother- a full time artist with a degree in botany, within a

rainforest backyard playground, my childhood was rich with creativity in a theme

of green. In 2000, I moved to the San Francisco bay area to pursue my degree in

Jewelry/Metalsmithing, and it became starkly obvious how important these nature

based values are for me, and I noticed them not present in many of my urban raised

peers. Every blade of grass and spring flower became more important than ever.

I also noticed our tendency to contain nature in our urban environment- the root

bound trees surrounded by concrete, the struggling ivy on old brick walls, and the

flower boxes in windows, free of every weed or invasive new shoot. As many others

are patiently waiting for the stop light to change, I day dream of how I can express

this which distracts me- the precious little things which most of us unnoticeably pass

by, growing with determination stronger than we can understand.


Instead of designing with precious rubies and diamonds, I've decided to give these

seemly mundane objects a new life- the blades of grass, fallen moth wings, bits of

lichen. To amplify them in an environment of gold and silver, giving them voice in

an otherwise muted urban environment. Amplifying these precious specimens I

churn up the questions- what is valuable to me? What do we find precious? And

hopefully, make us all stop, and notice the small things in life. Bringing nature just

a little closer to you.



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