Jodi Webster

Jodi Webster

About The Artist

Jodi Webster • Gilbert , AZ

My work is a derivative of Native American beadwork and ribbonwork designs of the Upper Midwest Region. Just as those before me gravitated towards utilizing materials of the era, I too am inclined to a more innovative means of making. I do not limit myself to merely creating by hand yet also employ CAD software and 3D printing. I feel it is important to continue with our Indigenous designs yet not be constrained by stereotypes of what is deemed Native American art/jewelry.


Artist website

Q&A with the Artist

Tell us how your work is made.

Initial designing is typically prepared in Adobe Illustrator in an attempt to create symmetry and precision which was something I have been attracted to in historic Woodland designs since a child. My work is both hand crafted by using a jeweler's saw, files and soldering; to utilizing CAD (three-dimensional design software) to create my designs, print them via a 3D printer to then be put through the lost-wax casting process. With each process being done by myself.

What makes you passionate about the medium you work with?

I am pushed to reinvigorate Woodland jewelry making in my region. I want to preserve and continue with the time-honoured interpretations of Woodland designs as demonstrated in beadwork and appliqué yet make the designs in a material that will withstand time. I am a true believer in the idea that representation matters. My initial passions, as stated above, go in tandem with countering stereotypes inside and outside of my identity as a Ho-Chunk/Prairie Band Potawatomi female. By using Woodland designs, I am countering the stereotype of aesthetically what is thought to be Native American jewelry. My use of technology contradicts the assumption that all Native American jewelry should be made solely by hand. This applies to my own culture by straying from the stereotypes of presumed means of making where I am not utilizing fabric, hides, sewing, or beading yet still executing works in a Woodland manner. All of which ties into making jewelry for the everyday professional. With my work I hope the wearer is invigorated by the pride of the Midwest and all the positivity and strength put into the ideas.

What is something unique about you or your practice?

I have run the full gamut of art mediums from my initial love of drawing in graphite and color pencil, to printing techniques (Lino-cutting & Serigraphy), graphic design, illustration, painting and to my present passion of metalsmithing. With each medium I experimented and expressed my Woodland interpretations with the goal of expanding upon what Native American art is thought to be. Despite my success with these two-dimensional works I felt I was not fully reaching my potential or contributing to my people. As I participated with my early works in Native American juried art markets, I began to notice the lack of representation in jewelry for my region. This realization correlated with research I did in museum collections on beadwork and appliqué designs. While researching I noticed how weathered the pieces would eventually become over time. I felt that my representations in 2D were not enough. Realizing that these designs needed to be preserved in a formidable manner, I began to create my works in metal. To this day I am surprised by how every medium I have ever dabbled in has contributed to my current making. Had I not made what seemed like an extensive journey of learning to use a variety of mediums or tools, I do think I would be making jewelry today.