Ashley Buchanan is a jewelry artist who received her BFA in Jewelry and Metalsmithing from the University of Georgia in 2009. She has exhibited nationally and internationally in galleries and museums such as Sienna Patti Contemporary, The Racine Art Museum and the Museum of Art and Design in New York where she was one of the artists featured in LOOT: MAD About Jewelry 2013. She also exhibits at SOFA Chicago, BIJOUX and other fine art fairs with Donna Schneier Fine Arts. Her work is available in galleries and shops in the United States and abroad, and she participates in high-end craft shows such as the Smithsonian Craft Show, The Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show and The American Craft Exposition. Ashley’s work has been featured in two of the Showcase 500 Series books, Ornament Magazine, Metalsmith Magazine and most recently she was featured in American Craft Magazine as one of the short-listed artists for the Emerging Voices Award. She is a 2014 NICHE finalist and was selected as one of the ten finalists for the LEAP award at the Society for Contemporary Craft. She is currently making her living as a studio jeweler in Atlanta, Georgia.
Ashley’s work is a series of hand-cut, powder coated metal that focuses on image, pattern and decoration in order to reference ornamentation and historical jewelry. As a maker, it is her intention to challenge the conventions of handmade jewelry through the use of traditional materials and new approaches to design and surface decoration. Utilizing silhouettes allows her to reduce historical images down to their most basic form and reference the history of jewelry with a clean, contemporary aesthetic. This is reinforced through the use of powder coating, a process commonly used on an industrial scale to coat or color large metal objects with a durable, uniform finish.
By using a limited color palette of black, white, greys and the occasional pop of yellow, she is able to allude to common colors of metal such as silver, gold and oxidized metal. The use of repeated iconic imagery has proved to be very important to her work and in her most recent pieces, she has been exaggerating simple motifs such as teardrops, ovals and chain links while including hints of decoration in order to create pieces that are less recognizable than traditional silhouettes. By combining the handmade with the industrial and the digital, she aims to produce pieces that speak to the past, present and future of Craft while maintaining a familiar identity between the viewer/wearer and the object.