Keith Lewis Studio

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Meet the Artist

  • About This Artist

    I started making jewelry by learning to cut stones in Korea when I was twelve. My materials are diverse; Hiirodo patinas, handcut selenite crystal, carved recycled water bottle blocks as well as niobium and sterling. My techniques are just as diverse; electrically coloring reactive metals, lapidary, many surface finishes as well as many time-tested traditional metalworking skills. Fifty years, two art degrees and many happy collectors later, I feel gratitude for how lucky I am to do what I do.

  • Q&A With This Artist

    A: I see myself as a “Materialsmith.” I work with minerals like mica, selenite and anthracite that say “nature” to me, as well as the traditional materials like sterling and base metals, and more recently recycled materials. The way I use the materials mirrors that diversity, ranging from ancient Japanese patinas to carving blocks of recycled water bottles, lapidary to laser welding, as well as traditional Western jewelry making processes. My surface treatments follow suit: multi-metal leafing, reactive metal anodizing, Batik-like pattern oxidization, Scraffito techniques on plated silver, and more all work towards keeping me excited to make my work so hopefully what I offer can excite my audience too.

    A: Much of what I feel passionate about in my work comes from the inherent qualities of the materials themselves, and from appreciating nature, maybe because we all share it’s inspiration. Similarly, I love the accident, the kind that reveals something unexpected, not packaged and controlled, like dropping white hot copper on a wooden floor and seeing what the flames do to its surface.

    A: Nature is number One. The painterly qualities of the jewelry object shown in Professor Hermann Jünger's work and the don't-take-it-so-seriously attitude of Calder's approach to making jewelry give me much to consider. Also, after being alongside ACC exhibitors for over 40 years, creativity can be contagious.

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