JAMES CLELAND, Jewelry Artist
My formal education consists of degrees in
the biosciences and geology. I spend part of
my summers excavating fossils. This ongoing
interest reflects my attention to jewelry
construction and the support structure of
my designs; my passion for natural designs
is constantly regenerated. I have been combining
these natural design elements with Japanese
symbolism to create contemporary jewelry with
traditional images, creating a new and whimsical,
look to these old patterns. Many pieces incorporate
moveable elements and are “storytelling”. A piece
of jewelry should be as beautiful on the back as
it is on the front, so I give equal design attention
to the reverse of my pendants, pins and bracelets.
My fabricating techniques are piercing, overlay,
forging, and hand engraving of 18 karat gold
and silver. On the pieces that rotate I used an
axle technique and gem set the ends of the axle
with a diamond or sapphire.