A linguist, an anthropologist, an award-winning jeweler, an artist and a poet—Joan Tenenbaum fuses her technical, intellectual and creative abilities into jewelry that is imbued with beauty, spirituality and mystery.
As a young anthropologist I traveled to the far North to document an endangered language in a small rural Alaskan village. Little did I know then that my life course would be changed forever from that experience. Being welcomed and loved by an Alaskan village community altered my perception of myself and our world. What resulted is a synthesis of an anthropologist’s perspective with a lifelong dedication to the art of jewelry making. Over the course of four decades, as my understanding of these cultures and the landscape they inhabit deepened, and my technical goldsmithing vocabulary expanded, my jewelry work has become more complex, more subtle, and the bearer of increasingly deeper meaning regarding our connection to the Earth.