Jewelry Talk with Patricia Kolodny
Patricia Kolodny's work is bold, colorful, abstract, modern with inspiration from antiquities, unapologetically beautiful, thoughtful, and moving. Art is an important influence for Kolodny, whether it's contemporary paintings or beautiful outdoor sculpture spaces like Storm King in upstate New York where this photo was taken.
Her inspirations throughout her jewelry career include collecting contemporary and modern art, travels to Greece, and cherished conversations with Helen Drutt (a well respected contemporary jewelry historian.)
We met up with Patricia to learn more about her and her jewelry making process.
Q: Tell us about yourself and your brand?
A: "My company name is very straightforward- PRK Fine Jewelry. Originally, my company name was Argento e Oro (Silver and Gold). People always needed a translation. So 4yrs ago I changed the name.
My pieces are created in silver, 18K and 22K gold. Most of my pieces are designed around the gemstones. I am attracted to gems for their size, organic shapes and color.
My life has taken many twists and turns. After College, I graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a Master’s in Social Work. Soon after, I married and we moved to my husband’s hometown of Montreal. I worked in the garment business with my husband. After 5yrs we returned to NJ. I then opened a children’s store specializing in high end imported and handmade clothes and accessories. Following a move to Princeton NJ, I sold my two shops. My daughter was born and I joined the docent association at the Princeton University Museum of Art. Employing my art and social work skills, I developed a program for inner city Trenton students bringing them to the Museum for extended visits. I retired after 20yrs at the Museum.
A friend suggested that I join her for an intensive week class at Jewelry Arts Institute in NYC. I have continued to take classes for the next 20yrs, improving my skills in metalsmithing as well as wax carving."
Q: What do you enjoy creating the most? Any specific type of jewelry?
A: " My favorite pieces are bracelet cuffs, necklaces, pendants and earrings. I think my mood determines what I want to create at any given time. Although a gemstone purchase may redirect my creative energy."
Q: How do you come up with your designs? What is your design process like? How did you start making jewelry?
A: "As previously stated, my friend suggested a class at JAI. I was hooked!
My design process usually begins with the gemstone(s), beads or other organic material. Other inspirational sources include books, museum visits, architectural elements, art movements, travel and observations.
I usually begin to draw until I come up with a design that suits the project. Then comes perfecting the design and incorporating technical information."
Q: What are your inspirations? Do you have any muses?
A: " I have many sources of inspiration. The Art Deco period and Modernist design are particular favorites. Memories of my trip to Morocco have always inspired me. The colors and patterns, especially tiles, are always in my head."
Q: Can you share what is your favorite piece of jewelry you’ve ever made?
A: " My favorite piece is a silver cuff with eleven, 22k gold bezels. Gemstones include peridot, black diamonds, moonstones and labradorite."
Q: Has there ever been a piece of jewelry you sold that you regretted and wish you had kept for yourself?
A:" I have kept all my favorite pieces. I am trying to recreate that cuff which was originally a unique piece. I will need to source calibrated stones and perhaps use a laser."
Fun facts about Patricia:
-“My family calls me “The Sponge”. I have the ability to recall names, places, events and the smallest details from years ago. Although currently, I cannot remember what I did yesterday.”
- “Friends and family feel that Kevin Bacon followed in my footsteps. Wherever I go or
whoever I meet, we are somehow connected. Six degrees of separation follows me.”