After spending the last three months in Contemporary Craft’s Studios as a Regional Artist-in-Residence, Amanda Stumpf is in her final week of her residency. So, we thought it was the perfect time to catch up with her to learn more about her practice and find out what she’s been working on.
What is your artistic background?
I was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. After high school I moved to Kent, Ohio to attend Kent State University. Here I completed a BFA (Bachelors of Fine Art) in Crafts with a concentration in Jewelry and Metalworking along with a minor in Art History. Wanting to continue my education, I moved to Florence, Italy to attend Alchimia Contemporary Jewelry School where I received my MFA (Master of Fine Art) in Contemporary Jewelry School and Body Adornment. After finishing my degrees, I continue my education through artist residencies and workshops.
What materials do you most often work with in your practice?
As a jewelry artist I typically use metal in my work. But as someone who likes to push the boundaries of what jewelry can be, I like to incorporate non traditional materials into my work.
How would you describe your practice?
I would describe my practice as one that priorities creating contemporary jewelry that could be found in art galleries. I also make more commercial work, but right now I am focused on finding a gallery to represent me and my work.
From where do you draw your inspiration?
I draw inspiration from everywhere, but I am most inspired when traveling. I find exploring new places, experiencing new things, and meeting new people is the most inspiring things anyone can do.
What is your creative process like?
My creative process could best be described and trial and error. Once I have an idea I will do some rough sketches. Next I get to work making, because as a very visual person I need to make samples and do trials to get an idea of how the final piece will look. During the process, I am able to see if the techniques and materials actually fit my vision or if they need to be changed.
What is your favorite part about creating/working with craft materials?
The best part of creating is the fulfillment you feel once a vision and idea you had become a reality. I find it the most productive way to get across feelings and emotions that are hard for me to put into words. Plus I find the whole making process very meditative.
Can you tell us about the body of work you are creating during your residency?
During my residency I have been creating a body of work inspired by the strength and stability of ancient architecture for a solo exhibition I am having at Galleria Alice Floriano, a contemporary jewelry gallery in Brazil.
What has your experience been like working in the Studios at CC?
I have loved my time at the studios at Contemporary Craft. There is such a great community of makers and I have meet so many amazing artists. I appreciate the community aspect of the studio and have enjoyed interacting with the community.
What challenges do you face as an artist?
I would say the biggest challenge for me is money. I love what I do, but it is really hard to make a living being an artist, especially in this economic climate. As the cost of living and necessities rise, people are spending less money on things like jewelry. But I do not plan on giving up on my dream anytime soon.