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Friday, November 14, 2008

LAST SHOW AT ARGENTUM


FIRST, THE BAD NEWS:
AS MANY OF YOU ALREADY KNOW, ARGENTUM IS CLOSING IMMEDIATELY AFTER CHRISTMAS THIS YEAR. I STARTED THE BUSINESS 2.5 YEARS AGO, HAVE BUILT UP MY ARTIST NETWORK, HOSTED SHOWS, WON AN AWARD, MET MANY FASCINATING AND WONDERFUL ARTISTS AND CUSTOMERS. UNFORTUNATELY, WITH THE TROUBLED ECONOMY AND "LUXURY" ITEMS BEING LOW ON EVERY ONE'S PRIORITY LIST, ARGENTUM HAS NOT BEEN ABLE TO MAKE ENOUGH OF A PROFIT TO REMAIN IN BUSINESS.

NOW THE GOOD, WAIT, SKIP THAT, THE GREAT NEWS IS:
WE ARE HOSTING A FINAL SHOW AT ARGENTUM, FEATURING CORWIN BUTTERWORTH. CORWIN RECENTLY WON THE 2008 "BEST OF" AWARD FROM RI MONTHLY FOR "BEST HANDMADE FURNITURE"
CORWIN DOES INDEED MAKE GORGEOUS FURNITURE WHICH IS SHAKER-INSPIRED AND WITH HINTS OF SCANDINAVIAN DESIGN ELEMENTS. MANY OF YOU HAVE SEEN HIS WORK ALREADY AT ARGENTUM; ONE OF A KIND CUTTING BOARDS, TABLES, BOXES ALL HAVE BEEN AT ARGENTUM SINCE I MOVED 1.5 YEARS AGO. THE SHOW WILL FEATURE NEW WORK AND SOME OF HIS LARGER PIECES THE SHOW WILL RUN FROM SAT. DEC. 13-SAT., DEC. 27TH. OPENING NIGHT WILL BE FROM 7-9PM SAT., DEC. 13TH AT ARGENTUM. ALL ARE WELCOME.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

SEAGLASS RING


NEW STUDENT GREG CRAWFORD EXECUTED MY DESIGN OF THIS RING AS HIS FIRST METAL SMITHING PROJECT. THIS GUY COMES WITH ALOT OF SKILLS ALREADY, SO HE DOESN'T TAP INTO MY KNOWLEDGE RESERVOIR TOO MUCH! GREG'S BIGGEST CHALLENGE: BEING "OK" WITH THE WORK NOT BEING PERFECT. HE APPEARS MORE COMFORTABLE WITH PRECISION, BUT IS WILLING TO EXPERIENCE IMPRECISION....AND I AM ALL ABOUT IMPRECISION!!!! THIS RING CAN BE PURCHASED ON ETSY OR THROUGH THE SHOP.

Friday, September 26, 2008

E T S Y !


PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE.....CHECK OUT MY NEW WORK ON ETSY, THE WEBSITE OF ALL HANDCRAFTED ITEMS.....THIS WEBSITE IS AWESOME. REMEMBER TO BUY HANDMADE AND SHOP LOCALLY!!!!! I CAN'T SEEM TO PUT IN A LINK, SO PLEASE CUT AND PASTE THIS ADDRESS: ARGENTUMDESIGNSRI.ETSY.COM

Thursday, September 11, 2008

LATE SUMMER UPDATE


BUSY SUMMER! AS WE HEAD INTO FALL, I JUST THOUGHT I'D KEEP YOU ALL INFORMED AS TO CHANGES AND HAPPENINGS AT ARGENTUM. FIRST, TAKE A LOOK AT THESE CUSTOM ORDER CUFF LINKS DESIGNED BY ME AND PRIMARILY EXECUTED BY SUMMER STUDENT WEN JENG. HE WORKED DILIGENTLY ON THIS PROJECT, WAS ABLE TO TAKE DIRECTION, AND HAD THE PATIENCE TO SEE IT TO THE END. GREAT JOB, WEN!
BY THE FIRST OF THE YEAR, ARGENTUM WILL NO LONGER BE IN ITS CURRENT LOCATION. WE ARE LOOKING FOR A NEW SPACE IN THE WAKEFIELD, PEACE DALE AREA AND MAY NEED TO BE CLOSED FOR A BIT BEFORE WE CAN RE-OPEN. NOT TO FEAR, I WILL KEEP YOU INFORMED AS TO ANY CHANGES! AHHH....CHANGE......


Sunday, August 3, 2008

ANOTHER SUCCESSFUL SHOW!


LAST NIGHT WAS RONNIE BORDEN'S FIRST SHOWING IN RI, SINCE MOVING HERE APPROXIMATELY ONE MONTH AGO.....THIS GUY MOVES FAST. BE SURE TO CHECK OUT HIS WORK BEFORE THE SHOW CLOSES AUG. 30TH!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

ARGENTUM WINS RI MONTHLY "BEST OF" AWARD


ARGENTUM WON THE RI MONTHLY'S 2008 EDITOR'S CHOICE AWARD FOR "BEST CRAFTY CRAFT"......CHECK IT OUT!
ALSO, DON'T FORGET THIS SATURDAY 7-9PM AT ARGENTUM IS THE OPENING FOR RONNIE BORDEN'S COLORFUL ABSTRACT ART....

Sunday, July 20, 2008

"SWEET MERMALADE"


ABOUT SIX MONTHS AGO, AS I WAS WALKING PAST A FAMILIAR CORNER GROCERY STORE ON THE WEST SIDE OF PROVIDENCE, A HAPPNIN' SPOT CALLED "THE MARKET", I WAS CAUGHT BY THE SURREAL IMAGE OF A GLORIOUSLY DECORATED "CAKE" BY PROVIDENCE ARTIST JESS PERRY. THIS CAKE WAS TRIPLE-TIERED, WITH NUMEROUS MINI TABLEAUS INVOLVING SORROWFUL LITTLE WORRY DOLLS, OCCURRING ON EACH TIER. JESS' MEDIUM OF CHOICE IS, I GUESS WHAT ONE WOULD CALL, MULTI-MEDIA??? I CALL IT HILARIOUS. NEEDLESS TO SAY, I GOT HER NAME FROM kHYM, THE ULTRA COOL OWNER OF THE MARKET AND COMMISSIONED A SUMMER PIECE FOR THE FRONT DISPLAY WINDOW AT ARGENTUM. WE MET DURING THE WINTER AND JESS SHOWED ME A SKETCH OF HER IDEAS. THIS IS WHAT SHE CREATED. ACCORDING TO JESS, SHE IS NOT YET DONE....."I FEEL LIKE SHE NEEDS SOMETHING MORE, I'M NOT QUITE SURE WHAT IT IS.....I GUESS SHE'S A WORK IN PROGRESS" JESS CREATED THIS PIECE WHILE WORKING AND STUDYING FOR HER MASTER'S DEGREE IN ART EDUCATION. LUCKILY FOR THE CITIZENS OF SOUTH COUNTY, SHE FOUND THE TIME TO CREATE THIS "MERMALADE". SHE WILL BE ON DISPLAY FOR ONLY A FEW WEEKS DUE TO THE HEAT THAT PENETRATES THE FRONT WINDOW DISPLAY, AS WE WOULDN'T WANT ANYTHING TO HAPPEN TO THIS SWEET MERMALADE!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

THE FAST TALKIN' TEXAN


TRUST ME, YOU WILL MISS SOMETHING GREAT IF YOU DON'T COME TO THIS OPENING!!!! RONNIE BORDEN IS A RECENT TRANSPLANT FROM ONE OF THE BIGGEST STATES IN THE UNION TO ONE OF THE SMALLEST....ALL IN THE NAME OF LOVE. WHAT COULD BE A BETTER REASON? HIS WORK IS ABOUT COLOR AND IS TEEMING WITH LIFE, AS IS RONNIE HIMSELF. ARGENTUM'S HALLWAY IS CURRENTLY ADORNED WITH SOME OF HIS WORK, AND ON SATURDAY, AUGUST 2ND FROM 7-9PM, WE WILL HOST A SHOW OF HIS LATEST WORK. SO, PLEASE, COME AND TALK WITH RONNIE, THE CONVERSATION IS LIKELY TO BE BOUNDLESS....

Sunday, June 22, 2008

JESS ZAKOWSKI OPENING


AWESOME NIGHT FOR JESS ZAKOWSKI. LOTS OF DELICIOUS FOOD PROVIDED BY FRIENDS AND FAMILY, GREAT TURNOUT, ONE SOLD PHOTO IMAGE ALREADY! HERE ARE SOME PICS OF JESS AND PAUL AND OTHER GUESTS.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

NEW SUMMER STUDENTS


THIS SUMMER I AM LUCKY TO HAVE TWO VISITORS FROM TAIWAN WHO WANTED TO LEARN SOME BASIC METALSMITHING AND STAINED GLASS CONSTRUCTION SKILLS AT ARGENTUM. HERE IS A PICTURE OF WEN JENG, AND THE RING HE MADE THIS WEEK. WEN AND HIS MOM HAVE A PASSION FOR LEARNING NEW SKILLS AND ARE A DELIGHT TO HAVE AROUND THE SHOP. PLEASE STOP IN AND SAY HI NEXT TIME YOU ARE IN TOWN!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

BRACELET BY AMY SUNDSTROM


CHECK OUT THIS GORGEOUS PORCELAIN BRACELET SET IN STERLING BY ONE OF MY STUDENTS, AMY SUNDSTROM. AMY WORKED HARD ON THIS. IT WAS A TEST OF HER PATIENCE AND STAMINA, BUT SHE DID IT. MARVELOUSLY, I MIGHT ADD.

Saturday, May 31, 2008

JESS ZAKOWSKI SHOW OPENING


COME SEE THE MYSTERIOUS WORK OF PHOTOGRAPHER JESS ZAKOWSKI. THE SHOW OPENS AT ARGENTUM ON SATURDAY, JUNE 21, FROM 7-9PM, AND HER WORK WILL BE ON DISPLAY UNTIL JULY 31, 2008. YOU WILL BE FASCINATED TO LEARN HOW SHE CREATES THESE ABSTRACT AND VISUALLY STUNNING PHOTOGRAPHIC IMAGES.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

WELCOME SPRING!

BE SURE TO STOP BY ARGENTUM SOON. WE HAVE ADDED MANY NEW ARTISTS AND JEWELRY DESIGNERS THAT ARE SURE TO PLEASE! NEW ART BY PEG MEEHAN, JULIANNA RICCI, JEWELRY BY MARYANN SHERMAN, FOX CUB DESIGNS, POTTERY BY DEB LANG BEAUDOIN. ALSO, REMEMBER THAT THE MICHAEL KACHANIS SHOW WILL BE COMING DOWN BY JUNE 1ST...DON'T MISS THE OPPORTUNITY TO SEE THIS ARTIST'S WORK. YOU WONT BE DISAPPOINTED!

Sunday, May 4, 2008

KACHANIS OPENING

LAST NIGHT'S OPENING FOR MICHAEL KACHANIS WAS A GREAT SUCCESS!  WE HAD GREAT FOOD AND SERVICE PROVIDED BY CRAVE RESTUARANT, PLENTY OF OLD FRIENDS, AS WELL NEW ONES MAKING THEIR WINDING WAY THROUGH ARGENTUM.  
MY DAD PLAYED CHARMING BARTENDER AND WAS A BIG HIT WITH THE LADIES!  "I WISH I WAS TWENTY YEARS OLDER" TO QUOTE ONE GUEST!   A SPECIAL THANK YOU GOES OUT TO DANIELLE HETU, WHO WAS ABLE TO SECURE FUNDING FOR THIS SHOW, AND OF COURSE, TO MICHAEL KACHANIS FOR HIS EXTRAORDINARY TALENT.  AND, THANK YOU TO ALL ARGENTUM PATRONS AND SUPPORTERS WHO CAME OUT IN FORCE LAST NIGHT, ESPECIALLY PRESTON AND JOANNE, MY FIERCEST SUPPORTERS, WHO RIVAL MY OWN FLESH AND BLOOD!

OPENING

Sunday, March 30, 2008

UPCOMING SHOWS

photo by Jess Zakowski

COME SEE SOME NEW ARGENTUM JEWELRY AT SECONDSTAGESTUDIO.COM ON DISPLAY FROM APRIL 1-APRIL 31, 2008. THE OPENING IS SUNDAY, APRIL 13, 2008 FROM 1-3PM. HOPE TO SEE YOU THERE!



ON SATURDAY, MAY 3RD, ARGENTUM WILL BE HOSTING ITS FIRST SHOW! THE WORK OF MICHAEL KACHANIS WILL BE DISPLAYED FROM MAY 3RD TO MAY 31ST. MICHAEL CREATES THE MOST CAPTIVATING SELF PORTRAITS....YOU'LL FIND IT HARD TO LOOK AWAY.

OPENING NIGHT IS SATURDAY MAY 3RD FROM 7-9PM. WE'LL ALSO HAVE DELICIOUS APPETIZERS PROVIDED BY CRAVE RESTAURANT.




MARK THESE DATES ON YOUR CALENDAR RIGHT NOW! AND REMEMBER TO SUPPORT LOCAL ARTISTS!



Thursday, March 13, 2008

UPCOMING OPENING

I HAVE BEEN WORKING VERY HARD TO PRODUCE NEW PIECES FOR MY UPCOMING SHOW AT SECOND STAGE STUDIO http://secondstagestudio.com IN CUMBERLAND. I BELIEVE THE OPENING IS SCHEDULED FOR APRIL 13TH, BUT CHECK BACK AS I WILL HAVE MORE DETAILS BY THE END OF THE MONTH. I WOULD NOT HAVE BEEN PREPARED IF IT WERENT FOR MY VOLUNTEER ASSISTANTS; JESS ZAKOWSKI, AMY SUNDSTROM, TONJA FEENEY AND JULIANNA RICCI. THEIR HELP HAS BEEN INVALUABLE.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

NEW HOURS

PLEASE TAKE NOTE OF NEW HOURS FOR ARGENTUM:
WEDNESDAY THROUGH FRIDAY 11AM-5PM
SATURDAY 10AM-5PM.
THANKS!

Thursday, February 28, 2008

SHOP LOCALLY!!!!

SEVERAL SHOPS HAVE CLOSED ON MAIN ST THIS WINTER. I MUST ADMIT, I NEVER REALLY THOUGHT CLOSELY ABOUT WHAT THE PHRASE "SHOP LOCALLY" REALLY MEANT UNTIL I OPENED ARGENTUM ALMOST TWO YEARS AGO NOW. SURE ITS LESS EXPENSIVE TO "GO NORTH" OR VISIT YOUR LOCAL WALMART, HOWEVER, IF/WHEN FINANCIALLY POSSIBLE WE SHOULD, AS A COMMUNITY, SUPPORT THE PLACES IN OUR OWN BACK YARD. MY FELLOW SHOPKEEPERS AND I ALONG MAIN ST. ARE GRATEFUL FOR YOUR PATRONAGE. WE PROVIDE YOU WITH QUALITY ITEMS AND PERSONAL SERVICE THAT CANNOT BE REPLICATED AT THE MALL.
AT ARGENTUM, MOST ITEMS ARE MADE RIGHT HERE IN SOUTH COUNTY BY RI ARTISTS. IN THIS ECONOMY, IT IS VERY EASY FOR A BUSINESS TO FAIL, AND IT IS UP TO US TO LEND SUPPORT SO NO OTHER BUSINESSES JUST DISAPPEAR.
SHOP LOCALLY.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

METAL LESSONS FOR FREE?!?!?

YES, ITS TRUE. I WILL OFFER FREE LESSONS TO ANYONE WILLING TO HELP ME PREPARE FOR A JEWELRY SHOW OF MY WORK AT http://SECONDSTAGESTUDIO.COM IN APRIL OF THIS YEAR. I WILL NEED TO HAVE ALL MY WORK READY (ABOUT 15-20 PIECES) BY THE END OF MARCH. I NEED SOMEONE WHO IS A QUICK TO LEARN, CAN WORK WELL WITH THEIR HANDS ON SMALL AND OFTEN TEDIOUS PROJECTS. YOU NEED TO BE ABLE TO REMAIN FOCUSED AND TAKE MY DIRECTION. IT WILL BE A GREAT LEARNING EXPERIENCE FOR THE RIGHT PERSON, GUARANTEED. CALL ME AT 401.284.2419 OR EMAIL AS SOON AS POSSIBLE AT http://ARGENTUMDESIGNS@COX.NET. THANKS!

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Learning something new every day....

I wasn't sure if I was going to enjoy teaching metalsmithing. Turns out, I love it (so far). Breaking down a project into steps, I now realize how much I learned from the woman who taught me, Thea Ernest.
Thea has some of her work in my shop and every time I show it to someone, I feel compelled to say "that was made by the woman who taught me how to metalsmith". Then I usually say, "however her work here is not really representative of how meticulous and precise she is". I know the amount of work and calculation that goes into her pieces, but some people may not. Her work looks effortless and that is because of her skill and expert craftsmanship.
Several years ago now, she was asked by the The Preservation Society of Newport County to recreate much of the historic metal work, including intricate lighting details, for the Isaac Bell House on Bellevue Avenue in Newport, RI. I had the honor of working along side of her on this project and got a bird's eye view into how something historic is recreated from renderings to actual execution. It was then I realized the extent of her talent. Her precision and ability to replicate was staggering.
I was able to work on historic pieces of metal and got to sign my name on the backs of some pieces over which I had labored. It was a privilege not many people get to experience in life.
Thea taught me how to make things out of metal, and now its my turn to teach. I hope I am good enough and I can only dream to be such an inspiration.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

SO RHODE ISLAND

DON'T FORGET TO PICK UP THE FEBRUARY ISSUE OF SO RHODE ISLAND FROM ONE OF THE VARIOUS DISTRIBUTION POINTS IN SOUTH COUNTY.....I GAVE A BRIEF INTERVIEW TO MARY LOU BUTLER FOR HER MONTHLY ARTIST SPOTLIGHT. CHECK IT OUT.

ALSO, THE ARGENTUM SALE WILL BE ENDING FEBRUARY 15. BE SURE NOT TO MISS THE GREAT SAVINGS ON ORIGINAL ART, JEWELRY AND OBJECTS FOR YOUR HOME.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

BEHIND EVERY ARTIST.....

BEHIND EVERY ARTIST THERE USUALLY IS SOMEONE THAT GIVES THEM SUPPORT SO THAT HE/SHE CAN DO WHAT NEEDS TO BE DONE. I AM FORTUNATE ENOUGH TO HAVE MANY PEOPLE IN MY LIFE WHO DO THAT FOR ME SO I CAN FOCUS ON KEEPING ARGENTUM GROWING. ALTHOUGH I HAVE KEPT THEM IN THE BACKGROUND, MY PARENTS HAVE CONSISTENTLY SUPPORTED ME THROUGH THIS ENDEAVOR. THEY HAVE BEEN UNCONDITIONAL AND STEADFAST IN THEIR SUPPORT OF MY DREAM.
HAPPY ANNIVERSARY, MOM AND DAD. I LOVE YOU.

ON A ANOTHER NOTE, I HAVE TWO OFFICIAL METALSMITHING STUDENTS! CLASSES ARE 25/HOUR FOR A TOTAL OF 10 ONE TO TWO HOUR CLASSES. CLASSES ARE CONDUCTED ON AN IDIVIDUAL BASIS AT MY SHOP. THE STUDENT OBTAINS ONE ON ONE INSTRUCTION ON THE BASICS OF METALSMITHING, SUCH AS LAYING OUT A DESIGN, SAWING, FILING, PIERCING, SOLDERING. LEARN A NEW SKILL THIS WINTER!!!!!

Saturday, January 26, 2008

ARGENTUM TO OFFER INDIVIDUAL CLASSES

STARTING FEB 1, 2008, I WILL BE OFFERING A BASIC METALSMITHING CLASS TO INDIVIDUAL STUDENTS. YOU WILL BE ABLE TO CHOOSE BETWEEN TWO DIFFERENT STYLES OF LEARNING METHODS. ONE IS FOR YOU TO BRING IN A DESIGN AND I SHOW YOU HOW TO EXECUTE IT AND THEREBY TEACHING YOU MOST OF THE BASIC SKILLS OF METALSMITHING. THE OTHER METHOD IS BASED ON LEARNING MOST OF THE BASIC SKILLS OF METALSMITHING THROUGH PRACTICING EACH SKILL, AND YOU MIGHT NOT NECESSARILY COME OUT WITH A TANGIBLE END PRODUCT. I WILL POST MORE ABOUT FEES AND SCHEDULES IN MY NEXT BLOG.

ANOTHER NOTE. LAST WEEK A RETURNING CUSTOMER CAME IN AND ASKED IF I CARRIED A PARTICULAR ITEM. I SAID I DID NOT AND REFERRED HER TO SEVERAL OTHER MERCHANTS ON MAIN ST. HER REPLY WAS: "THANKS BUT I WANTED TO BUY IT HERE, SO I WANTED TO CHECK HERE FIRST". I TRULY APPRECIATE THE SUPPORT AND KINDNESS OF ALL MY CUSTOMERS. THANK YOU, LISA! CUSTOMERS LIKE YOU GIVE ME THE STRENGTH TO KEEP CREATING.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

ARTIST APPRECIATION

Occasionally I think it is important to acknowledge how lucky we are in this little state, in this little town called Wakefield, to have such an abundance of talented artists. In quiet moments, I look around the shop in awe of the art that surrounds me. Today, one of the artists brought in a lamp he made from stained glass. He also is a wonderful painter and sculptor, and constantly blows my mind with the variety of his talent. When he brought the lamp in today, I said, "Where did you get the lamp?" and he quickly responded "I made it, where do you think i got this lamp?" To which we both laughed and I thought "Stupid me, of course he made it". "And I made the little finial on top, too". The finial is made out of copper tubing and twisted wire with a hollow copper ball at the top. It is so very funky.

I love this job. I get to meet the most wonderful, creative, interesting and talented people. I have to pinch myself sometimes to remember that they have chosen to show their artwork at MY shop. And I do so appreciate it.