Joan North – Featured Artist
Artist Portfolio Magazine’s 20 Art Competition
I have always meandered the creative path, following a different drummer, mixing odd spices, infusing new life into organizations with entrepreneurial left turns, and sometimes just thinking on a different plane. I have maneuvered words, paints, plants, fiber, glass, beads, and metal
Since 2000 I worked with stones, fabric, and glass to create unusual jewelry, ultimately discovering my love of metal. I like shapes that remind me of life situations (my “Metaphors in Metal” series), starkly simple shapes, and combinations that draw your surprised eye. I love contrast in form and similarity in color. I dream of new designs, smiling in my sleep.
Who am I? Where am I from? What have I done? Born in St. Louis and raised in waterfront Fairhope, Alabama, my 43-year career as an administrator in colleges and universities scooted me around the country—Tuscaloosa, Erie, DC, Davenport, and Stevens Point, WI. As Dean of the College of Professional Studies at UW-Stevens Point, I relished the greatest job of my life for 25 years. Retiring in 2010, I am now a full-time fine jewelry artist trying to make a business out of this bubbling passion.
A basket full of degrees (BS, MS, Ph.D.) attests to my love of being a student. I have learned about art, form and metal from masters across the country and annually seek out teachers who unlock new mysteries. Learning new things keeps one humble.
When I can loosen the ties that bind me to the studio, I play tennis with giddy abandon, deal bridge with my laughing friends, read a Kindle while I walk the treadmill, bask in a well chosen word that pops up, and waive an eco-flag over all I do.
I appreciate my customers whose admiration makes me blush. My early jewelry education included workshops by internationally renowned instructors. Further study helped hone my skills and refine my own silversmith style. I’m a full time, award-winning silversmith whose jewelry is shown at galleries, museums and exhibits across the country.