By Diane Small
Some like it rough, and hard rock lover and jeweller Andy Lifschutz is definitely one of them!
The designer began exploring metalwork in Brooklyn with renowned designer Kristin Hanson. His natural inclination for design and bursting expression was further honed under the guidance of William (“Billy”) Thomas King at the Sterling Quest School of Jewelry Design and Creation in San Miguel De Allende, Mexico. Here, he explored the textures and colours of various stones, and decided that he preferred them rough, unpolished.
He started to produce jewellery that reflected that exact aesthetic, and it became so popular with tourists, it could be said that Lifschutz truly made his greatest strides in metallurgy in the picturesque artist’s town in Mexico where, he launched his brand.
Although he is currently based in New York City, the rough and wild shapes of nature still greatly inspire eco-jeweller Andy Lifschutz. His latest “Nature Speaks” series features raw, uncut stones on recycled silver, brass and gold bases. Statement pieces in themselves, when you wear one of Lifshutz’s creations, you really don’t need to wear a single other piece of jewellery.
It’s no wonder, really, that Lifschutz is often referred to as a ‘sculptural jewellery’ designer, and indeed, the heavy, brilliantly coloured stones and thick, handcrafted bases of his rings do seem to be pieces of wearable art. But we prefer to think of his work as almost anthropological: with the deliberately primitive cast of the metal and the raw cuts of the unpolished stones, these works wouldn’t seem out of place in a Celtic or Viking archeological dig–or on modern rock’n’roll royalty.
They seem to act as something as a conversation starter, and we love that he focuses on creating the two most wearable pieces of jewellery, in our opinion, anyway – earrings and rings. The one criticism we have? Although the artist is inspired by nature, he’s not doing much to preserve it, since he’s not using recycled metal in his creations. Not yet, anyway – we can only hope that someone who notes so much beauty in the natural world will soon find a more sustainable way to reflect it.
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