Crypt of Wanton Riches
Medium/Materials: Bronze, sterling silver, brass, yellow sapphires, cognac diamonds
Dimensions: 2.5 x 3.25 x .75 inches
This sculptural belt buck features a cast bronze archway with functional hinged sterling silver gates. The gates open to reveal 27 bead-set natural yellow sapphires and 10 bead-set cognac diamonds scattered among the chaotic bronze forms. With this piece I was able to combine my traditional stone-setting skills acquired through years of working as a repair and custom bench jeweler with my own creative and artistic vision as a sculptor and metalsmith. The central theme I explore in my creative process and highlight in my work is the idea of control, both in the physical world around us and within our own consciousness. Through the creation of my sculptural forms and objects, I seek to explore the nature of the unconscious mind, and create physical representations and reinterpretations of the structures of my internal mental landscape. This piece represents a re-constructed reality that conforms to my understanding of my interior thought processes as sub-system infrastructures, networks of support systems, and modules of access, passage, and control. By taking ones innermost fears, insecurities, and neuroses and creating physical representations that can be worn and displayed, one is able to identify and establish control over the subconscious forces at play within ones internal mental landscape.
Jason Stein is a jeweler, metalsmith, and sculptor living in Matthews, NC. He received his Bachelor of Fine Arts In Metals and Jewelry Design from the Rochester Institute of Technology in 2008 and then pursued and received his Masters of Fine Art in Metal Design from East Carolina University in 2010. His work has been featured in national and international exhibitions and symposiums such as the “4th Annual International Belt Buckle Championships”, “Overflow” SNAG exhibition in Savannah, GA, “Carolina's Got Art” at Elder Gallery in Charlotte, NC, “State of Matter: Juried Small Iron works” at STEAMworks in Scranton, PA, the International Iron Casting Symposium in Kellokoski, Finland, and the “Stone/Color” land art symposium and exhibition at Pedvale Sculpture Park in Latvia. He comes from a fine craft and materials background, and considers himself before anything else to be an object maker. He is interested both visually and historically in the technology of machinery, manufacturing, security, and tools. His works are objects of personal desire and reflect his particular spheres of interest, which include antique machinery and mechanical devices, industrial landscapes and aesthetics, lock and safes, and methods and structures of access and control. His recent work deals with the interpretation of jewelry and sculptural forms as a gateway into the inner workings of one's mental landscape and internal thought processes. He currently works as a traditional bench jeweler in Charlotte, NC focusing on goldsmithing, jewelry repair, and stone-settting with an emphasis on fine, antique, and estate jewelry.