Jewelry has long been used as an enduring symbol of rank, status, achievement, and expression of love or remembrance, creating a unique kind of language in countless forms wrought in precious metals, gems, and natural materials. My work explores the limitless techniques of metalwork and enameling in a continual pursuit of beauty, as I seek to embody moments of time and expressions of love, longing, and remembrance into enduring forms of adornment and future heirlooms.
My thoughts and emotions are deeply connected to the pure beauty, delicate details, and captivating patterns of the natural world; I am further inspired by one’s relationship with nature and sense of awe experienced by observing the raw beauty within it. I believe this practice can serve to remind us of our place in the world and find new meaning beneath the layers of the hectic every-day. Through the dedication of making, I can lose myself in a kind of meditation while transforming raw gold and silver into other states, while shaping and waiting for them to become revealed into unique and enduring objects of adornment.
Barbara uses a technique called Keum Boo. Here is a bit of Wikipedia intel on the technique.
Keum-boo (also Geumbu, Kum-Boo or Kum-bu—Korean “attached gold” is an ancient Korean gilding technique used to apply thin sheets of gold to silver, to make silver-gilt. Traditionally, this technique is accomplished by first depleting a surface of sterling silver to bring up a thin layer of fine silver. Then 24 carat gold foil is applied with heat and pressure—mechanical gilding—to produce a permanent diffusion bond.
Pure precious metals such as gold and silver have a very similar atomic structure and therefore have a good potential for bonding. Heating these metals to a temperature between 260–370°C increases the movement of the atoms. When pressure is added, this causes an electron exchange at the surface between the two metals, creating a permanent diffusion bond. This diffusion bond occurs far below the soldering temperature for either metal (Dhein, 2004).