Eleanor Moty

American metalsmith and jewelry artist Eleanor Moty was born in Glen Ellyn, Illinois in 1945. Her experimentation with industrial process, such as photoetching and electroforming, was revolutionary in the field of American art jewelry during the 1960s and 1970s. In the 1980s, her interest turned toward faceted planes and geometric designs.This interest instigated a working relationship with chemist Raoul Reiser. In 1980, Moty was the first woman and first humanities professor to receive the H. I. Romnes Faculty Fellowship for excellence in teaching at the Univeristy of Wisconsin, Madison. She also received two National Endowment for the Arts craftsmen’s fellowships.

Throughout her career, Moty explored many of her interests through her jewelry work. She became fascinated with the mixture of precious and non-precious objects, focusing particularly on working with rutilated and tourmalinated quartz. Moty was also interested in planes and geometric designs and, later in her career, architectural forms and stones with complex surface cuts. Because Moty worked with and learned from a variety of people, from artists to chemists, she has been able to incorporate a variety of techniques and ideological perspectives into her work. Celebrated for her innovation, in 1998, she was elected to the American Craft Council of Fellows.

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