Memento Page: 1
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Historically, jewelry around the world has incorporated not only precious and
semi-precious materials, but also found objects. I have integrated organic materials
such as chili peppers and shells into my work. My attraction to these materials was due
to the interesting character of forms and their fragile, rather impermanent characteristics
in contrast to the permanence of metals. Some of these materials change in while the
others act as a metaphor for growth and transformation. The influence of these forms is
still apparent through my current work. Although I blend alternative materials, my work
is strongly rooted in the tradition of metalsmithing. Precious and semi-precious materials
have been re-used and recycled and most of the techniques applied have been
developed throughout time. By retaining the use of traditional materials and processes, I
maintained my link to the history of metalsmithing. By using non-traditional materials in
conjunction with ones that carry inherent values, I tried to give equal aesthetic weight to
the alternative ones.
Recently, I began incorporating human hair into my work. When I started making
lockets in the spring of 2000, I wanted to see how the space within the locket could be
used to contain material that would suggest personal time, growth, and memory. I felt
that personal routines, such as getting my haircut, kept me in my cycle, helping me to
adjust myself from one calendar year to the next. Historically, human hair has been
used for jewelry, such as mourning jewelry during the Victorian era. I have been
interested in hair jewelry having multiple functions such as personal adornment as well
as social significance; announcing status and wealth, signaling deep affection and the
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Kataoka, Masumi. Memento, thesis, May 2003; Denton, Texas. (https://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc4203/m1/6/?q="Master%20of%20Fine%20Arts": accessed May 23, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, https://digital.library.unt.edu; .