Selkie Masks and Jewelry - Connie

Using unique components such as natural stones and handmade glass beads, I make masks and jewelry. Weird combination? Not really, jewelry is kind of the same as masks. Masks make shape shifters of us all. When we put on a mask, we can assume the identity of the mask character. We do the same thing with jewelry. The fashion designer Ann Demeulemeester said, "Jewelry is something that has to do with emotion. That aspect of jewelry really interests me."

"I have been making wire jewelry - and think I'll really do something with it, eventually." Did I say that? No, Alexander Calder did, but I completely agree. Working with wire is fascinating, forming three dimensions from what is essentially two.

Growing up in South Louisiana you have to love masks (or hate them, I suppose). I spent a lot of time during my formative years walking around the streets of New Orleans looking at masks. Twenty years ago I began collecting them: Noh, Balinese, Venetian, Cambodian, Mexican, as well as Mardi Gras. There are masks for plays, religious festivals and traditional fetes. My handmade masks are all original designs, created on a paper mache form and with multiple layers of gesso and paint to give texture, color, and expression, embellished with pearls, semiprecious stones, glass beads and more. Each mask has a stone or amulet in the forehead, the chakra or inner eye that leads to opening doors to one's consciousness.

For more examples of my work and where you can purchase it, please visit my artisan space.