I recently came across a thread on Twitter discussing the importance of beauty and how it’s being destroyed by usability. Now, this could sound a bit dramatic, except that it really isn’t if you look at a lot of modern architecture and technological changes. I highly recommend reading through the original post, which I will link below, because the writer does a much better job illustrating his points than I could:
This did get me thinking, though, on my own stance on beauty. Now, given that I make and sell jewelry, it rates very highly with me. People generally enjoy form over function when it comes to picking out their shinies. But, honestly, it’s more than that to me. If you’ve been following this journey with me for any length of time, you’ve heard, or read, the phrase “Everyone has a story.” Probably ad nauseum, though I make no apologies for that. Because it still holds true and it still drives what I do.
Beauty is what keeps me going. It’s sitting at my bench and letting the gemstones tell me what they want to become. It’s a delicious scent of someone’s perfume lingering in the air. It’s stopping to admire newly opened flowers in the spring, or the gorgeous colors of autumn. Beauty pushes me to aspire beyond my skills to get better, create more. The thread that runs through all of that is beauty. It adds color to the outline of our lives, giving a much fuller picture. It’s not always something we notice, but it’s always there.
It was beauty that got me to make my first ever cocktail ring. I wanted to make something special for someone I have a burgeoning friendship with and remembered this gorgeous ruby. And I knew that it needed to be hers. It was difficult and often painful (Ian can attest to the tears), but I did it and it is one of the things I am most proud of in this world:
Much of life these days is about getting through to the next thing. Get yourself out of bed so you can get to work, get to work and just hold on until you get back home. With slight variations here and there we wash, rinse, repeat. I think, for being so important, beauty and aesthetics are often dismissed as frivolous. But in your darkest moments, it is a source of comfort, a moment of hope. Ethan Hawke actually said it best when he speaks on poetry and how art can sustain you, make sense of things when nothing else seems to. If you can, take a moment to watch this:
My point is, I’m often turning over what my artist’s statement is, what it means to be an artist, why I do what I do. And the answer, at the end of the day, is because I am enamored by beauty and would bathe myself in it constantly for the rest of my life if given even a sliver of opportunity. And I will continue to, hopefully, create pieces that will allow some of that to enter into people’s lives, too.