Susan Lenart Kazmer is an internationally-recognized mixed-media jewlery artist, silversmith and teacher. She’s developed many “cold-join” techniques over the years to transform found objects into Talisman works of fine art.
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I have always felt that the more experiences you have in life, the more you are able to offer in your work. On my journey, living life, exploring and unfolding as an artist, I find inspiration for my work in various mediums. Watching a bird run back and forth with the tide creates a beautiful rhythm that can be transformed into a three-dimensional form. The visual impact, the color and condition of a dilapidated barn can be captured in a piece of metal.
I have always had a passion for found objects. Recently I have considered another dimension utilizing found objects. Picking up a piece, holding it and contemplating it, I let the object lead the way as to what direction the finished piece will emerge. The magnitude of energy carried with the found object from their previous lives can be seen felt and touched. When you close your eyes and hold the object in your hand you can feel whether the user has enjoyed, neglected, or cherished it. Fear, happiness, struggle, and strength are also feelings embedded in an object. My job as an artist is to take the found object and present it in a new and unexpected way.
Combining these energies in recycled objects is indeed creating a contemporary talisman. Consider the mental power put into a pencil stub worn down by an accountant during tax season, or the mundane repetition locked into a key from an old factory locker, or the freedom embedded in the bones of a free-range chicken. I believe these energies lend power and mystery to ordinary objects. In my work I use them to create talismans worn for protection, freedom, and strength.