is an alchemy - a blend of art and technology. The craftsperson
applies his skill and expertise to transform basic elements such as
silver and gold, into beautiful and lasting works of art. At
Gerhard's studio, each piece is created entirely by hand. Working
closely with one trained assistant, manufacture is a labor-intensive
process whereby each piece undergoes several stages of development.
First, a sheet of metal is cut to shape. Next, it is formed
utilizing traditional handforging and anticlastic raising
for earring style 608 shown below. Cut from SS/14K Gold
Forging and anticlastic
raising are processes in which hammers are used to shape the metal
by simultaneously stretching and compressing the material. Like a
sculptor who develops his forms from a block of clay, the
accomplished metalsmith skillfully demonstrates the intrinsic
plastic quality of metal and generally renders the original shape
unrecognizable in the finished form.
stages of the anticlastic forming process for earring style
The images above
illustrate some of the various stages of the manufacturing process
of earring style 608. Once the forming process is complete, the
metalsmith then sands and polishes the piece, resulting in a
beautiful piece of jewelry.