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Lee Rumsey Haga

During the years that I lived on the Oregon coast, I was continually inspired by the beauty of the coast line. I am drawn to the abstract shapes found on a beach, like a wave surrounding a rock, or a cliff protruding sharply into the volume of the sea. The Oregon coast is similar to Japan's coast, and my personal aesthetics mirror their philosophy of wabi-sabi, or rustic simplicity. In my jewelry and sculpture, I endeavor to combine contemporary Western metalsmithing techniques, like reticulation, hydraulic press or anti-clastic forming, with Japanese aesthetics and appreciation of natural materials. I have been a custom goldsmith/metalsmith for 30 years, and am particularly intrigued with the traditional Japanese alloys, shibuichi and mokume-gane, which were used in the Samurai arms and armor centuries ago.

The textural and coloristic properties of these wonderful metals give my work an ancient volcanic or oceanic feeling which I contrast with the smoothness of an agate, the warmth of copper or the brilliance of gold. Currently, I have been casting shibuichi and making my own mokume-gane billets. With these metals I design a line of "Pacific Rim" jewelry.

I received my Master's degree from Lewis and Clark College, and am the metalsmithing/jewelry-making instructor at Mt. Hood Community College, near Portland, Oregon. I enjoy incorporating Asian concepts into some of the student projects because we can learn much from older cultures.

Tina Heaton's Work at RiverSea Gallery

Click on the following thumbnails to see bigger pictures.

Haiku Cuff Haiku II
Yin Yang

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