Seattle metalsmith Nadine Kariya presents elegant designs and stories in jewelry and small functional objects.

Join us for our Eye on Artist Lecture series with Nadine Kariya.



I began making narrative jewelry when Karen Lorene of Facèré Jewelry Art Gallery invited me to participate in a show celebrating her 70th birthday. She asked artists to each select one year to make a piece about – I picked 2009. Narrative jewelry had interested me prior to this, as I was inspired by Ramona Solberg, an early artist from the Northwest working in this style.

Barack Obama was my person of 2009, winning the Nobel Peace Prize and starting his Presidency. I decided to use his words as the basis for this piece. I hammered out his quotes for the Earth, Credo, and Peace brooches.

I carved my first bird, emulating a hawk made by an unknown Japanese-American relocation camp internee of World War II. The original bird carving I inherited, and the art piece I created from its inspiration, are both on display in BIMA’s Permanent Art Collection – New Acquisitions exhibition. Please visit the first floor, Lovelace Gallery to view these.

I decided my favorite bird was the Kingfisher. For my next series I carved two of these birds in boxwood for ecology-themed necklaces. Kingfisher Bon Voyage was inspired by mother-in-law Milly’s souvenir coaster from San Diego. Her Michelangelo snack tray became the foundation for Kingfisher Sits Between Man and Man’s God…and Mother Nature.

- Nadine Kariya, 2017

More Exhibitions

Salish Sea

Alfredo Arreguín: Life Patterns

Rachel Feferman Gallery
October 13 - February 03, 2019
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