Artist of the Month - 18Karat


Every month we have introduced you to one of the Canadian artists we represent - 17 artists and counting. With the new year fast approaching, we have decided to give an introspective look at the past year and gaze towards the year that will be, from withing 18Karat itself.
This month we will be asking ourselves, the artists and creatives behing 18Karat Studio + Gallery, to reflect on our favourite moments of 2018.

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December 4th, 2018

18Karat is a studio and gallery like no other - not only do we create our own fine jewellery as well as custom creations for our clients, but we also represent an ever evolving collection of contemporary Canadian jewellery, handmade by artists across the country. When it comes to Canadian jewellery, we are proud to say that if we have not created it ourselves, we certainly know the artist who has.

Carved bicolour citrine created by Hans Jakob Klein, Germany

Q: What was your favourite or most memorable event from this past year?

LENA : The trip I took to Montreal to visit some of our artists. It was wonderful to finally meet the individuals who create the jewellery we show every day! I also really enjoyed the trip that Mass and I took to see our winemaker - we have ice wine again folks.

FIONA: The Fairchild TV interview and filming. Everyone was excited about the filming. It was great to see media people interested in art jewellery and willing to share. And a visit from Hans Jakob Klein, a stone supplier and gem carver family from Idar Oberstein, Germany.

VANESSA: Definitely has to be working with some of my favourite artists again, in a curatorial capacity. We have some of the most talented artists living, working and creating in this country and it is an honour to be able to help get their work seen.

Massimo and Lena in Niagra

Custom 18k white, yellow and rose gold bracelet

Q: What was your favourite custom piece from this year?

FIONA : Definitely the bicycle chain bracelet. The customer was very open minded, so we can go crazy about drawing designs. I was very excited to see the design comes into reality.

DINO : My Favourite custom piece is Shawn’s “Number 5” diamond pendant.

Shawn, wearing his new pendant

Q: What are you most excited for next year?

LENA : Without giving anything away… I’m very excited for our next exhibition beginning in March. The theme of the work is of particular interest to me and I can’t wait to see what our artists come up with!

FIONA : I’m hoping to attend an international jewellery week in 2019; choosing between Munich, Barcelona and New York. Another Metalaid meeting would be nice.

MASSIMO : I am looking forward to a nice, relaxing holiday in Mexico.

DINO : I'm looking forward to another year of advancing how we do things, using the latest technologies that advance every year and keep us busy!

Ring by Dominique Audette
Photo by John Kane

Kasumiga pearls

Q: Who was your favourite artist / collection from 2018?

LENA : I absolutely loved Dominique Audette’s Fleurs & Bourgeons ring collection that was featured in our Biophilia exhibition. Each piece is bold and alive – they brought a new energy to the gallery.

FIONA : I love pearls. I was really excited to see Kasumigaura pearl. It’s a new product, farms in Kasumigaura lake near Tokyo Japan. They have great lustre, size, interesting shape and comes in natural pink and golden colour, very different from conventional freshwater pearl. I also enjoy Janis Kerman’s collection; I’m a big fan her pearl and mother of pearl jewellery pieces. -Favourite collection - Lynn’s Axel-bis collection is my recent favourite. The moment you pick up her jewellery is always amazing when you see the links and parts move along with you. It’s like dancing.

DINO : Bayot Heer. Like his free-flow but balanced design. And Janis Kerman for her good sense of asymmetrical composition and colour palette.

Diamond and orange sapphire ring by Bayot Heer

3D renderings by Fiona

Q: Which the tool saved your life in 2018?

LENA : Swiss jig, always and forever <3

FIONA : This year we bought a license for Rhinoceros, a CAD program popular amongst jewellery designers. It felt great to see our customers becoming very excited when they found themselves virtually move, zoom and adjust around their future jewellery piece.

DINO : Hands down - our laser welder.

Dino using the laser welder

Lena soldering

Q: What is the most memorable thing you learnt from the bench this year?

LENA : The most intimidating things end up being most rewarding – it’s never as scary as it seemed at first. I am grateful every day to be learning from Dino, who has so much wisdom to share! Such as: don’t drink coffee before soldering.

FIONA : I already forgot!

DINO : That even after a decades of experience on the bench, there is still always new things to learn, like : there is still so much to learn about using a laser welder!

A custom family ring

Q: What is the most memorable customer you met this year?

LENA : Anyone that brings in old pieces for repair. I love talking with these customers and hearing about how jewellery has a special place in their family history.

FIONA : I enjoy having a conversation with anyone who appreciates jewellery. For example, Ms C. bought a ring for her 80th birthday. It was a geometric minimalist gold and oxidised silver ring, very modern! She then came back and told us the ring has been catching a lot of attention, for example on the subway, and she has been telling everyone about our gallery since.

DINO : For me, it was a mother and daughter. We did a family ring which includes birthstone of her mom and her aunt, who raised her. The pair has a fun good spirit vibe. It’s a pleasure to build something special for the daughter.

Rosie - one of our part-time helpers

Q: Now for our most important question : Regarding our part-time shop dogs, who pulls their weight the most around here - Rosie or Mousse?

LENA : It’s a toss up - two very different personalities, both loved.

FIONA : Mousse. I heard Dino is training him to press on laser welding machine pedal.

DINO : No contest - Rosie.


A big thank you to all of our clients, suppliers and artists who support our studio and gallery. You challenge us each and every day to create art and an artistic space in which creativity can thrive, and for that, we are forever grateful. See you all in 2019!

18Karat Studio+GalleryArtist of the Month - 18Karat