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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