Profile picture of Jan Smith

I reference botanical forms, textiles, and rusted metals in my work. I use the enamel to build layers of images, color, and marks; generally working in a series using recurring elements as one would familiar words to address my response to these objects. The recurring elements are meant to evoke memories, layers of varied emotions, and past experiences.

My training as a printmaker influences my treatment of the surface and use of colour. Colour has always been a prominent part of my work as it allows for emotional expression and form definition. My work is process orientated; I begin feeling rather than a completed design. I use vitreous enamel to create colour fields, marks and textures. I work intuitively with the materials, excited by the imperfections in the surfaces. I work toward a finished piece through a series of trial and error compositions, bits and pieces of models I am fascinated by the movement and the sound made while the piece is worn. Jewelry for me is more than decorative object, it is a form of public art; something which holds an intimate message worn to communicate an idea or concept in the public realm.

Jan has been working in the field of art jewelry since the mid 1980’s. Her work spans one of a kind works, limited production series and sculptural pieces. She combines precious metals with vitreous enamels and alternate materials. Her pieces are informed by the complexity of the botanical forms and natural objects, patterns, shapes and texture of the forms, and architecture.

Her work is considered first as an object in space where its form and structure are explored and then as a wearable object. The design process involves sketches and model making, during this process the movement, sound and functionality of the pieces are considered.

Jan’s work has been exhibited nationally and internationally and her work is represented by galleries in Canada and the US, which include Galerie Noel Guymarc’h in Montreal, Velvet da Vinci Gallery in San Francisco, and Facere Jewelry Art Gallery in Seattle. She has has received several awards for her work including Jurors’ Award, from the Northern CA Enamel Guild, Jurors’ award from the Enamelist Society, Award of Merit, from the Northern CA Enamel Guild.

Where to Buy

Work is not available for sale through the SNAG website. Please contact the artist directly to inquire about making a purchase.