Jewelry-Making Workshop Opens Gallery

December 22, 2006

At Galerías Metallo, jewelry-making apprentices have unveiled the fruits of a year or two of pliers-wielding, waxcasting, stone-embedding study at a gold and silver workshop connected to the gallery on San José’s east side.

The workshop and academy, Studio Metallo, opened in September 2004. Several instructors teach Italian-style jewelry design and construction to emerging artists of various levels (TT, July 1, 2005).

Galerías Metallo came to life at a grand inauguration Dec. 1 with live music and 200 visitors, said its manager, Ruth Pineda.

The public can now view or buy from the gallery’s 200 pieces, which are the original designs of half a dozen students and the workshop’s founding artist, Damaris Ortuño.

There are also several made-in-Costa Rica paintings and sculptures amid the glass cases in the small, well-lit room.

Why buy a $40 ring at the mall when you can get a handcrafted one for less than twice that? Pineda asked.

Most of the jewelry is elaborate, even fancy, crafted with .925- and .950-grade silver, 14- to 18-karat white and yellow gold, a long list of stones and, in a few pieces, bone. Prices range from $45 to $2,800.

Pineda unlocked a $110 ring cast in several grades of silver. Explaining how pure silver (1.000 grade) is more malleable than the less-expensive alloys, she bent with her finger the tiny silver wires that shot from the ring like the pistil of a flower.

Metallo artists are regional pioneers in this type of handcrafted jewelry, Pineda said. But the works are to be worn, not collected, she stressed. Buyers are guaranteed a unique piece, as apprentices turn out a maximum of 20 pieces per design.

Galerías Metallo is in Barrio Escalante, six-and-a-half blocks east of the Santa Teresita Church. Hours are 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday. For more information, call 225-1570 or visit www.studiometallo.com.

 

You may be interested

It’s frog orgy season
Environment and Wildlife
1105 views
Environment and Wildlife
1105 views

It’s frog orgy season

Lindsay Fendt - May 25, 2018

The rainy season is upon us. For many of us that means hiding indoors for the next few months, but for Costa…

Costa Rica’s guilty voters
No Sugar Please
71 views
No Sugar Please
71 views

Costa Rica’s guilty voters

Álvaro Murillo - May 25, 2018

By what I have done, and by what I have left undone. A relative of mine is 70 years old…

Fed up: Nicaragua’s uprising
Nicaragua
90 views
Nicaragua
90 views

Fed up: Nicaragua’s uprising

Alexander Villegas - May 25, 2018

We all heard it. University students and protesters across Nicaragua stood up against the country’s increasingly authoritarian president, Daniel Ortega,…