In an interview with JCK, designer Belle Brooke Barer talked of her rise in the jewelry world, as well as her latest collections.
When asked about her favorite among the awards she's won and why, Barer said, "That is a hard question. Right off the bat I want to say Spectrum, but in reality, the most meaningful award was the Halstead Bead Grant for Business Development. I was only the second annual winner, and over the years I have developed a great relationship with the Halstead family, Hillary in particular, and I have even taught a workshop at their facility to the employees. What I really like about this award is that it is also a grant for which applicants present a detailed business plan and are judged on more than just the collection itself. The grant also gets great press each year and each winning artist receives media attention."
"I studied photography for a long time before even considering jewelry as a career. I worked a lot in black and white and had a job doing large-format black and whites for a firm that made reports for the Library of Congress records," said Barer when asked about the origins of her yin-yang collection. "All of the archival records were processed in black and white. I don’t feel like I ever left my photographic eye behind, just transferred the principles into something more sculptural. I make jewelry based on photographic principles because that is what comes naturally. I find meaning in the representation of yin-yang because you simply cannot have one without the other, they are inextricably connected and we have to learn how to live in this balance."
When asked which of her pieces are her favorite and the process of making it, Barer said, "The Hera necklace (you can see it on the slider under Company Philosophy on my website). It took a few weeks to make, it involved detailed layout to get it totally proportional, and was one of my first pieces to feature larger cabochon stones. I love the design, the way it sweeps across the collarbone, it moves. It is my go-to piece for special events."
Information originally sourced from JCK.