"If you don't continue experimenting and learning something new, you might as well just go back to bed."
"Hello, I'm Albert Ickenroth. I was born in the Netherlands where I studied economics as well as art appreciation. I've always loved the great masters like Van Gogh and Rembrandt. In 1976 I took a vacation trip to Mexico and fell in love with the people, the music, plant life, wildlife and folklore of this beautiful country. And so I stayed.
"As fate would have it, I found work as a designer in a world-renowned papier maché workshop. There I taught techniques and procedures unknown in Mexico and developed new styles. After a few years, I opened my own workshop where I began to experiment with new designs in papier maché as well as in gold and silver jewelry. In some cases, the jewelry includes papier maché.
"My designs are always related to the fauna of this magical country. They have been used to decorate international restaurant chains, and some of my works have appeared in advertising spots for major credit cards. I always sign each piece so the buyer can be assured that this is my work.
"To create a piece of jewelry, I begin by sculpting the design in clay. From this, I make a model in wax and cast a plaster mold. Then I cast a second piece in wax, carefully adding the small details by hand. I use the lost wax process in my works, crafting the jewelry in silver. To apply gold, I first treat the silver with enamel in the areas that will retain their original color, then I electroplate the piece with 22k gold. Finally, I clean and polish it.
"For me, creating is an essential part of my life. If you don't continue experimenting and learning something new, you might as well just go back to bed."
Poised on a golden bar, a tree frog swings his silvery leg as he dreams of rainy summers. Albert Ickenroth crafts the fanciful figure in lustrous silver bathed in 22k gold and presents it on a silver chain.
Symbol of patience and wisdom, a chelonian turtle centers this fascinating necklace by Nyoman Rena. It is crafted by hand of sterling silver with elaborate detail, featuring a reconstituted turquoise shell to resemble the green hue that makes Chelonia....read more
Handcrafted of silver, a handcrafted turtle necklace suggests a jigsaw puzzle. Kunio Takeda pays tribute to the sea turtles that lay their eggs on Mexican beaches each year, from the Pacific to the Caribbean. Volunteers work to preserve these endangered....read more
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