Melanie Bilenker, Bouquet, 2009. Brooch. Gold, ebony, resin, pigment, hair.
Melanie Bilenker is definitely on my list of all-time favorite jewelers. I first came across her work a few years back, and she's quickly become one of those artists whose work I keep falling in love with over and over again. First of all, can you believe that the imagery in these pieces are made using hair? Her own hair, in fact. I love how elegant and detailed these are without being overwhelming - she captures simple, ordinary moments in an incredibly intricate, unusual way. As Bilenker explains about the creation of these pieces:
The Victorians kept lockets of hair and miniature portraits painted with ground hair and pigment to secure the memory of a lost love. In much the same way, I secure my memories through photographic images rendered in lines of my own hair, the physical remnants. I do not reproduce events, but quiet minutes, the mundane, the domestic, the ordinary moments.
Melanie Bilenker, Nap, 2008. Brooch. Gold, ebony, resin, pigment, hair.
Melanie Bilenker, Garden, 2007. Brooch. Gold, sterling silver, ebony, resin, pigment, hair.
Melanie Bilenker, Hairpin, 2006. Brooch. Gold, sterling silver, boxwood, epoxy resin, pigment, hair.
To see more images of her amazing jewelry, check out Melanie Bilenker's website.