State Route 511 runs through long stretches of rural Ohio, past sagging Victorian houses and abandoned expanses of milkweed and train tracks. Even as a toddler, this mostly uninhabited road filled me with a clashing sense of wonder and unease.
I tried to capture this memory in ‘On 511,’ one of my first experiments with sgraffito in vitreous enamel. On the back of the piece, I etched a portion of a 1949 health insurance ID card which I found among family ephemera. I filled the piece with bronze to add a physical feeling of heaviness. The bail is meant to echo the shape of the electric lines that I depicted in the scene, and I etched the bezel with an original micro poem about a recent visit to the area:
"My white breath climbed a tree
and a bird called a song I did not know."
Necklace, 2017. Sterling silver, vitreous enamel, rust, steel, original micro poem; etched, hand painted, torch fired, hand fabricated.