July 19, 2021
Natasha Miller is one of the 8 artists featured in our show 'Form & Function' from May 8th - August 7th, 2021. The artists in this show blur the lines between sculptural and wearable, and are experimental in the forms they incorporate into their pieces. Shop the entire exhibition HERE
Q: What attracted you to this material versus more traditional jewelry making practices such as metal and stones?
My first metals class in college was about containers and I made a complicated fire hydrant that catapulted me into the process. I was, and still am enamored by the transformation of the metal. I’ve always loved this idea of creating 3D objects out of these raw materials. To me, metalsmithing is like solving a puzzle and I love that challenge. Creating contemporary jewelry has become a bridge between my love for sculpture and my desire to be relatable.
Q: Do you feel that you visualize an object and then transform it into a wearable piece, or does the concept materialize as a smaller form and then grow from there?
Though I started out as an artist with drawing and painting I do not sketch any of my ideas. I have a difficult time committing to decisions until I am in the moment. I had an abstract painting teacher in college who told me something that has guided me through my art making since: create a starting point and respond to the marks you just made. For me, it is very easy to get overwhelmed with a blank canvas and an expectation of something grand so this idea allows me to create without expectations. “Negative Space” naturally formed as a line that allows me to have physical pieces in my hand to manipulate and make the decision right then and there.
Q: What is the importance/significance of the connection between sculptural and wearable to you?
For me, it allows the wearer to be included in the pieces. It can bring the body into the composition that the piece creates making it more than just jewelry. The name of my line “Negative Space” refers to a technique I use when I am drawing still lives or portraits. Instead of focusing on just the item, you also need to see the shape it creates in its space in order to accurately portray it. When creating sculptural pieces, I aim to incorporate the space it takes up around it as to create small compositions with the wearer.
Q: When looking at other artists, do you find yourself drawn more towards metalsmiths and jewelry makers or sculptors and object makers?
I find myself attracted to more sculptural items while traditional fine jewelry is what I am drawn to the least. I’ve been very fortunate to have the opportunities to dabble in many different materials making me interested in seeing how people take them on themselves. What I love about contemporary jewelry is that it is more sculptural and less reliant on traditional aesthetics. It allows an artist to create body adornment while also utilizing the vast assortment of materials that the world has to offer.
Q: What is the relationship between form and function for you and your work? Is one more important than the other?
For me, the form is what allows something to function. I have created many pieces that I test that do not function well as a wearable and it forces me to alter it creating something I like even more. What I love about “Negative Space” is that they look different at every angle, changing the form for the viewer. My work tends to be on the larger side in terms of jewelry, which emphasis form over function.
Natasha MillerMiami, FLTo shop all of Natasha's work, CLICK HERE
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