Using traditional silversmithing techniques and materials paired with alternative materials, I explore the potential of a well-made hollow form and non-traditional possibilities for color in a conventionally achromatic media.
I draw inspiration from the patterns, shapes and color of vintage fabrics; and the clean lines and minimalist aesthetics that characterized the international style of mid-century modern furniture. True to my materials, I choose them and their treatment first based on functionality and then second based on beauty.
By hand forming, fabricating and incorporating alternative repurposed materials, a standard shape or form becomes dynamic and vibrant. My finished idea is visually simple yet technically complex.
Carrie Hoffnagle grew up on a farm in rural Iowa, where she helped her father build fences, and her mother construct her own clothes. She can catalog her entire childhood with handmade projects. These experiences instilled in her the strong value of "build it yourself."
Carrie studied fine art at Iowa State University and fell in love with metal. Her focus began early when she discovered that she could have almost absolute control over it. She learned to manipulate metal with traditional construction and hollow forming techniques, while she developed an admiration for mid-century modern and Scandinavian design.
Just weeks before graduation in 2006, she found a garbage bag full of discarded architectural laminates: her first inspiration for creating wearable jewelry. Following graduation she embarked on a journey to learn more. She carried those materials with her and found more along the way. While working for goldsmiths and silversmiths, she developed her own style through exploring the possibilities of repurposed materials.
In 2009 she set off again, this time with fresh ideas and skills to build her own jewelry. She began exhibiting her work at art events throughout the U.S. Now, when she isn’t traveling with her art, Carrie calls the Uptown neighborhood of Minneapolis home, where she designs and builds jewelry for her studio, I Build Pretty Things.
Art Fair on the Square, Madison, Wisconsin, Best of Jewelry 2009
Uptown Art Fair, Minneapolis, Minnesota, Juror's Invitational Award 2009
Iowa Arts Festival, Iowa City, Iowa, Award of Excellence 2010
Fiesta Arts Fair, San Antonio, Texas, Juror's Invitational Award 2010
Laumeier Sculpture Park Art Fair, St. Louis, Excellence Award 2011.