For more than fifteen years, I have been exploring a process of using epoxy resin to create a composite material made of layered recycled paper, now called “Thurmanite®.” I find both the conceptual as well as the aesthetic aspects of this material compelling, particularly as a material for jewelry. Throughout human history, we have adorned ourselves with materials found in our surroundings and I am interested in continuing that tradition. In pieces with Thurmanite® made from solid colored papers, the material seems to be a lightweight and colorful stone of unknown origins, inviting further exploration. In pieces with Thurmanite® made from maps, the physical layers of the maps represent the conceptual layering of our life experiences through our daily travels. It is my goal that my jewelry is beautiful, wearable, and thought-provoking.
Most recently, I have been creating jewelry that showcases jewels made of Thurmanite® in a series called “Layered Energy.” Smoothly formed sterling silver within geometric frames cradle the jewels, which are highlighted by a variety of set stones and fused gold linear elements. The metal components are united with the Thurmanite® through a variety of cold connections, which I find to be an ongoing creative problem-solving challenge. This body of work is significant due to its innovative experimentation and combination of unique materials and processes. Each piece becomes a wearable distillation of playful problem-solving, encouraging and inspiring others to open themselves to the joys of passionate creativity.
BIO AND INFO
© James Thurman
Graphics by Triple Threat Press