Q: What made you want to get into the jewelry business?
A: I never started off wanting to go into the jewelry business. It all just evolved magically like a Hollywood movie. I was discovered, put into the most prestigious jewelry gallery in the country, (Sculpture to Wear in the Plaza hotel) and my career just exploded without my ever intending to have a career in jewelry. I knew I was an artist, and I was just feeling my way into the art world when the jewelry I had started making became a business all by itself.
Q: Where do you draw inspiration from?
A: I draw inspiration from sacred geometry, the natural beauty of all living things. I am inspired by ancient history and futuristic visions. I am the bridge between the past and the future, between tribal and urban cultures.
Q: What are your major influences?
A: My major influences are the great artists who demonstrate that in everything they create there is a powerful signature handprint, a DNA imprint, a message from the soul that is consistent and recognizable in absolutely everything they make. Examples of these artists are Brancusi, Calder, Picasso, Arp, Warhol, and many of the great visual artists who move from one classification to another without ever losing their signature style.
Q: What is the most exciting place your jewelry has been featured?
A: The first most exciting moment in my career was when I had my brass bubble collar on the cover of Vogue in 1976. While I have had countless similar experiences of publication, that still remains the most critical in terms of my career trajectory.
Q: Which collaborations have you enjoyed the most during your career?
A: My first most enjoyable collaboration was with Calvin Klein and his design staff for his fall 1981 show. It was thrilling and fun and ended up gaining me a Coty award. The next most exciting collaboration was in 1985. I was an integral part of the Donna Karan launch, where the theme of black and gold was really the wedding of Donna and Robert, which lasted for 36 collections, and influenced the entire fashion and jewelry industries for years.
Q: What sets your designs apart from those of other lines?
A: The key features of my work, those that set it apart from all other jewelry collections in the world, are the bold sculptural forms that emphasize the sensuality and comfort of fluid shapes, undulating and sexy. My jewelry is more about the metalwork and the sculptural foundation of my look than the setting of jewels, decoration and trendy effects that have little lasting value. What sets my work apart is the fact that there is content, storytelling and the integration of my own personal philosophy of design and aesthetics as opposed to most other lines that emphasize decorative details, stones and bling.
Q: What is your favorite material to work with?
A: I favor brass and silver.
Q: What are your top styling tips?
A: Top styling tips? Use jewelry to empower yourself, to increase your confidence and create a body language of strength and simplicity.
Q: What are some of your favorite trends for fall?
A: My favorite trend for fall is the use of major necklaces. Adorning your neck is an important, creative statement above all other trends.
Q: What are the 3 must-have pieces from your collection?
A: A major statement piece from the Iconic metals collection — large hammered gold or silver metal earrings or a large iconic cuff. You also need something with movement like the pieces from the Windchime collection.
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