Susan Cummins on Judging the Susan Beech Mid-Profession Grant

The $20,000 Susan Beech Mid-Profession Grant presents prestige, recognition, and funding to the winner.

  • Acknowledges a mid-career artist who has made a considerable contribution to the sphere of artwork jewellery
  • Open to makers aged 35–55 on the January 8, 2023 deadline
  • Proposal needs to be about jewellery, loosely outlined
  • Data right here

The distinguished jurors for this grant cycle are AJF founder and collector Susan Cummins (US); curator and historian LaMar Gayles (US); and jewellery historian, curator, and writer Beatriz Chadour-Sampson (UK). We are going to interview all of them, beginning with Cummins.

Susan Cummins, photograph courtesy of Susan Cummins

AJF: How have been you launched to modern jewellery?

Susan Cummins: I used to be launched to American craft within the Seventies and opened a small store that principally featured ceramics created by my companion, who was a potter. We did road festivals and bought wholesale. Finally a gallery house got here up for hire in Mill Valley, the place we had our studio and store, so we bought that. I then began displaying a wide range of craft media, together with jewellery. I used to be very impressed by the intelligence and talents of the jewelers and commenced to be very keen on it.

This 12 months continues to see a variety of disruption and uncertainty—epidemics, struggle, political unrest, and financial stressors—however we’re additionally seeing huge adjustments to the methods folks work and work together. Do you anticipate to see totally different sorts of proposals given the adjustments we’re experiencing?

Susan Cummins: Sure, I hope to see new and surprising methods of approaching jewellery. Even jewelry-adjacent work can be attention-grabbing to see.

What do you suppose is the only most necessary dialog for artists to be having immediately?

Susan Cummins: Easy methods to survive.

In addition to grants comparable to this one, what different methods do you suppose that artists may be inspired and supported?

Susan Cummins: They have to be educated in promotional and advertising and marketing talents and studying how one can cope with manufacturing and distribution firms. Studying methods to assist themselves whereas nonetheless making distinctive work could be very exhausting. But there are various methods to try this. The artists of the previous don’t actually current highway maps for this, so it will be a part of their inventive growth, too. Ceramic and fiber artists have entered the design and artwork markets. I imagine that jewelers must try this, too. The craft market of festivals and small galleries is not going to maintain them throughout time.

Susan Beech
Grant founder Susan Beech, photograph courtesy of Susan Beech