Bio | Statement | Exhibitions | Media


A lifelong enjoyment of art and music fueled my creative aspirations and for years I found vocal and instrumental music a fulfilling counterpart to professional nursing.

One year, an Ozark vacation took me to a gift shop where I saw beautiful crystals and polished agate slabs. This chance visit rekindled my forgotten childhood love of rocks and was the catalyst that initiated my jewelry career.

In 1984 our family relocated to Mesa, Arizona from our native Midwest. Coming "home" to the desert has nourished my spirit and influenced my work significantly.

Though our children are grown and scattered, my husband and I are rooted to this special setting where we continue to explore and delight in its amazing diversity.


I am inspired by the unique characteristics of many stones and crystals in their natural state or shaped and polished to reveal their beauty. While color and pattern figure strongly in my choice of stones, I also delight in wonder-filled pieces such as ancient Roman glass shards, meteorites, fossils, and stones which "play" with light: iridescence, translucency or schiller.

I design and fabricate each piece of jewelry myself. The design process usually begins with the stones. I love spreading them out with other pieces such as fossils, crystals, and meteorite fragments so that I can discover those which seem to have an attraction for one another. I find it fascinating that individual materials may be more compelling in combination than separately. The various elements will suggest a mood or feeling that I interpret visually. The curves and angles of nature inspire my sculptural one-of-a-kind jewelry, their spare, dramatic lines reflecting Scandinavian and Japanese influences. I enjoy working directly with my materials, designing and fabricating each piece with silver or gold or a combination of metals. Fabrication involves working directly on the metals: cutting, filing, shaping and constructing. Through techniques such as forming, forging, piercing, appliqué and "hollow" construction I achieve variety in form and volume.

Learning about the geographical and geological origin of stones has increased my appreciation of our earth and its treasures. As a way of sharing that appreciation, I include a "story" with each one-of-a-kind piece. It identifies the materials used and tells a bit about them.

Through my jewelry I hope to share the immense pleasure I have found in natural stones, to emphasize our bond with nature, and to inspire positive, uplifting emotions.

My designs pursue the expression of joy and happiness. These positive feelings are suggested by a rising "gesture" and by motion, actual or implied. The process of bringing metal, stone, and emotion together in my work is very gratifying; when others feel a kindred, joyful response to it, my expression is complete.


  2008; Gallery 100, Tempe, AZ
  2nd Annual Arizona Designer Craftsmen Juried Exhibition

"Infinite Perceptions"
  2006; Shemer Art Center and Museum, Phoenix, AZ
  Invitational exhibition of juried members of Arizona Designer Craftsmen

"The Art of Southwest Jewelry"
  2006; Tohono Chul Park, Tucson, Arizona
  Juried exhibition

"Arizona Designer Craftsmen"
  2005; Tubac Center of the Arts, Tubac, AZ
  Members Juried Exhibition

"Boro Bead Extravaganza"
  2004; Gallery 33, Portland, Oregon
  Juried Glass Bead Show (Collaborative work / Kristen Frantzen Orr)

"The Right Chord"
  2002; Arts Afire Glass Gallery, Alexandria, VA
  Juried Glass Bead Show (Collaborative work / Kristen Frantzen Orr)

"Recollection and Recognition"
  2000; Arizona Commission on the Arts
  Two year traveling exhibition

"Visions of Grandeur"
  1999 (Nov) - 2000 (Jan); West Valley Art Museum, Sun City, AZ
  Juried exhibition of Arizona Designer Craftsmen

7th Annual Invitational Jewelry Show
  1999; Kittrell/Riffkind Art Glass, Dallas, Texas
  One-of-a-Kind and limited edition jewelry (Collaborative work / Kristen Frantzen Orr)

Award - Jewelry
  4th Annual Silverhawk Fine Crafts Internet Exhibition

"Reflections" -
  1999; Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art, Scottsdale, AZ
  Juried Glass Bead Show (Collaborative work / Kristen Frantzen Orr)

"Recollection and Recognition"
  1999; Shemer Art Center, Phoenix, AZ
  Juried exhibition of Arizona Designer Craftsmen

Featured Artist
  1998, September; Mind's Eye Gallery, Scottsdale, AZ

"A Tradition of Excellence"
  1998; Tubac Center of the Arts, Tubac, AZ
  Juried exhibition of Arizona Designer Craftsmen

"Formed, Fabricated II"
  1997; Phoenix Center for the Arts, Phoenix, AZ
  Juried exhibition of contemporary metalwork by Arizona artists

"Art Spirit"
  1997; Shemer Art Museum, Phoenix, Arizona
  Juried exhibition of Arizona Designer Craftsmen


Step by Step Jewelry Gifts for the Holidays
  December 2003; reprint: "Glass Cabochon Earrings"
  December 2002; reprint: "Sterling Earrings for Lampworked Beads"

Lapidary Journal
  October 2000; Jewelry Journal Project: "Glass Cabochon Earrings"
  February 2000; "Rising Lines" by Marcia Detwiler Riley
  February 2000; Jewelry Journal Project: "Bezels for Irregular Stones"
  October 1999; Jewelry Journal Project: "Sterling Earrings for Flameworked Beads"
  October 1998; Facets column

Arizona Republic Newspaper, Phoenix, AZ (Scottsdale Community Edition)
  September 23, 1998; "Artisan's Career Etched in Stone" by Janelle Cowgill

The Rep (Weekly), Phoenix, AZ
  September , 1998 Arts Section

Channel 3 TV, Phoenix, AZ
  September , 1998 midday show
  Appearance with Marty Hanes and Mike Warren