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SNAG Celebrates: Lisa Koenigsberg

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SNAG celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2019 and is honoring its membership by highlighting different people on the SNAG website.

 

Lisa Koenigsberg

Please introduce yourself.
I am Lisa Koenigsberg and I’m the founder and President of Initiatives in Art and Culture (IAC). My own areas of expertise would be the history of American art and culture, with a deep commitment to contemporary jewelers and metalsmiths both here and abroad. My focus is on visual culture and all the projects we undertake have a dual commitment.

Our conferences explore visual culture and champion individuals, institutions, and organizations in varied media and materials. We bring together makers, growers, miners, retailers, journalists, financiers, regulators, and environmentalists both to trace the ties that bind individuals and communities along the continuum from extraction through fabrication to sale or investment using a cross-disciplinary approach, and to illumine the importance of each link in these remarkable chains.

Respect for materials, craft, and authentic expression are at the core for us. We’re particularly concerned with ethical practice and responsible sourcing, whether in textiles, gemstones, or precious metals, as in the annual International Gold Conference.

IAC crowd

How did Initiatives in Art and Culture begin and how has the organization progressed or changed over the years? Can you tell our membership about what your position with the IAC entails and what the goals of the organization are?
When I was at NYU as Director of Programs in the Arts, I had developed a variety of annual multidisciplinary conferences. After watching the launch and development of a number of these programs, my then dean suggested that that this was a significant body of work which should exist as a separate organization. Fifteen years ago, I founded IAC with his help. We focus on visual culture, heritage and preservation—we bring together every sector or discipline under consideration. My goal has always been to bring together cutting-edge authorities, practitioners and artists and thought leaders to pursue fresh approaches to the world of visual culture with the ultimate goal of changing the culture.

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2020 SNAG Lifetime Achievement Award, Eleanor Moty

SNAG’s 2020 Lifetime Achievement Award recipient is Eleanor Moty.

Eleanor Moty 2020 LAA

Moty’s contribution to our field as a highly regarded artist, as a teacher, and as a mentor has been exemplary and worthy of SNAG’s highest honor. Moty has made an indelible impact on the field through the training and mentorship of generations of metalsmiths, and has made a sustained impact on SNAG itself though many years of support and involvement with the organization and as lifetime ambassador of SNAG within the broader national Crafts community.

In 1968 Moty received her BFA in jewelry from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and in 1971 she received her MFA in jewelry and metalsmithing from Tyler School of Art, Temple University, Philadelphia.

Sterling silver, 22K gold, phantom quartz 2 1/4" x 2" x 3/8"

Eleanor Moty, sterling silver, 22K gold, phantom quartz, 2 1/4″ x 2″ x 3/8″

 

While an undergraduate at the University of Illinois, Moty began researching photo fabrication techniques and electroforming with the encouragement of her professor, Robert von Neumann, and she continued her research in the graduate program headed by Stanley Lechtzin at Tyler School of Art, Temple University, Philadelphia.  She gained recognition for her pioneering work in photo fabrication techniques of photo-etching and photo-electroplating early in her career and in 1970 she was one of nine presenters at the first SNAG conference in St. Paul, MN.  The topic of her presentation was Photo Fabrication.  This introduction led to other speaking and workshop engagements and in 1972 her work was featured in Frontiers of Photography, in the Time-Life books series on photography. She was subsequently invited to participate in photography as well as jewelry exhibitions.  Her work and research were featured in numerous books and articles and for more than a decade she taught photo-etching workshops at jewelry programs throughout the U.S.

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