Having been actively involved in the craft movement since 1973, Ruthie Cohen spent the first 10 years working in fiber, creating wall hangings, window treatments, and even furniture via off-loom weaving and macrame techniques. Answering a challenge to create wearable art “off the wall”, she first miniaturized her designs in waxed linen with gemstone beads. Soon after, Ruthie dove into metal. Earrings, bracelets, necklaces, and even wedding bands were knotted into shape with sterling silver, gold-filled, and 14 karat gold wire. Self-taught, Ruthie’s jewelry skills developed as she exhibited her work at renowned craft fairs in Florida, Maryland, Washington DC, and New York City, where she accepted challenging commissions from an international clientele.
Moving to Western North Carolina in 1993 had a profound effect on Ruthie’s work. The jewelry designs began to loosen up, they flowed more….. even the stone choices seemed more random but yet made sense together. Somehow the freedom of the mountains influenced the designs. Ruthie became intrigued by the specular crystal formations found in drusy. She started creating pieces with drusy as her focus which appear to be floating, or suspended on fashioned wires of sterling silver or 14 and 18 karat gold.
These days, Ruthie’s jewelry designs have become a study of contrast. Metal textures have come into play along with the more three dimensional aspect of chasing and repousse. New beginnings and new design paths are opening up. Enjoy your travel down those paths to explore Ruthie’s vision of wearable art…
“I have always had a life-long fascination with color and patterns in light. I remember as a child spending hours studying clouds, the flecks and veins of mica in granite, and water flow patterns in streams. My jewelry designs and stone colors are chosen with the idea in mind that light in its various levels of color and depth is released from the hidden shadows and dances through defiantly.”