Robin E. Westbrook
Robin E. Westbrook is a Jewelry Designer who makes "nOt Junes Jewelry", the name referencing the iconic TV mom, June Cleaver, who always wore a simple string of pearls; and "URBAN TRIBAL", unique, hand beaded pieces. Check out "nOt Junes Jewelry" on Facebook!
Read an interview with Robin, below:
Robin Westbrook is an artist working primarily in hand-beaded jewelry. Her company, nOt June’s Jewelry, produces two lines: NJJ/Original and URBAN TRIBAL. She consistently brings in new work to show at not only ARTspot [we get show her NJJ fun whimsical designs here] but she shows the Urban Trival around the corner at Cole Gallery. We’re introducing her to you by way of a brief interview.
ARTspot: Robin, what materials are you currently most interested in using to create your fabulous jewelry?
RW: Japanese seed beads! They are extremely uniform, and come in precious metals. I also love Austrian crystals. And of course, I work only with good hand tools.
ARTspot: Are you adding any new techniques to your repertoire?
RW: I am forever using YouTube to find demonstrations of bead weaving techniques and styles. Once learned, I tweak them to suit my style.
ARTspot: Where do you find your inspiration to create art?
RW: Creating jewelry meets more than just my need to make necklaces and bracelets. It provides me with a social network of like-minded people. Of course, it also challenges me to get out there and promote what I do! And it has opened up more time for reflection.
ARTspot: It sounds like you’ve found a life-giving cycle. Connecting and reflecting inspires you to create, which in turn inspires you to connect and reflect!
RW: That’s right!
ARTspot: What are your essential influences right now? And what is it about them that stirs you?
RW: Well, I am powerfully influenced by social, political and environmental commentary. And I’m a fan of great writers, Jack Kerouac, Gertrude Stein… Some of the artists that intrigue me are Motherwell, De Kooning, Fischl, and Schnable. Musicians influence me too: Bob Dylan, Van Morrison, Lucinda Williams… they make you think. They are driven to say something, to make a statement. I want my jewelry to do that -- make people stop -- take a second look.
ARTspot: What are you working with at the moment?
RW: Right now I am having a love affair with leather, but not just any leather -- naturally dyed, metallic leather wrapped with a band of URBAN TRIBAL -- hand stitched bands of precious mixed metals that bring together glamour with an edge. I want to express toughness as well as beauty.
ARTspot: How would you describe the art you’ve chosen to bring into your living space? What would you love to add to your collection?
RW: I find myself lately being drawn into heavy sculptural pieces, big, bold… almost angry. Give me something that demands attention! I would love to add something like that to my collection.