Jill Baker Gower
The female experience is a reoccurring theme in my work. My jewelry and sculpture is informed by everyday interactions and observations of gender-based expectations or generalizations. Within advertisements, popular culture, and the media; similar colors, patterns, shapes, beautification techniques, and pastimes intended for women are clear. My material choices, surfaces, and forms are developed in one way through my exposure and interest in this experience.

The shapes and forms of my pieces come from disparate inspirations including the female form, faceted gems, historic jewelry and metalwork, and tools or implements for beautification or medical procedures. The surfaces of my work are often ornate, etched with lace patterns, and at times are paired with actual crocheted elements. These choices allude to femininity initially by being flowery, lacey, and curvilinear, by their association with popular use in women’s apparel, and since the act of crochet or lace making is currently and was historically known as a women’s skill. I choose to incorporate skin, red, and pink toned colors in my work primarily to reference human flesh, cosmetics, the body, and blood.

Materials such as skin toned rubber and mirrors reference bodily transformation, self-examination, and vanity. Other materials like pearls, jewels, lustrous fabrics, feathers, enamel, hair, silver, and gold are chosen for their aesthetic qualities, emotional resonance, preciousness, and value associations. With these materials, formal considerations, and influences I create work that is both playful and beautiful and at times even absurd or humorous.