Q: Congratulations! You recently celebrated your 60th wedding anniversary, and now the 30th anniversary of your business! To what do you attribute this long and fabulous career?
Eve: To an artist, I think creating is a natural activity, like eating or drinking…exhilarating or frustrating, but always intense. “In Great Spirits” is a reminder that life can still unpack delight – that we are wired for joy as much as for doom.
Q: Is there a secret meaning in the title for your new series “In Great Spirits,” and can you elaborate on it a bit?
Eve: …You can rage at the dying of the light, you can go off on the road less traveled by, but deep down, we are social animals, and derive warmth from celebrating together such things as the harvest, a wedding or a good death.
Q: Looking back on 30 years at your gallery, is it what you expected?
Eve: As a teen, I had this romantic vision of founding an artists’ colony, housed i an ancient castle…we’d all be making art. And when I would reach the age of 36 (being ancient) I would leave this earth…didn’t completely work out this way!
Q: What is the key to longevity in both work & life, in your experience?
Eve: I worry very little. I rejoice often. I really like being part of a community, both coworkers and our patrons!
Q: What would you like to say to those who have been with the gallery since the beginning?
Eve: The absolute first thing I owe is gratitude to all those kind, patient art patrons who allowed me this extraordinary adventure!
Q: Do you still do any gold & platinum smithing work yourself?
Eve: There is never enough time in the day, so when I do, it’s done at night. This is when I can open the taps of inspiration & let ideas flow…designs evolve unbidden as a piece emerges.
Q: Are there any techniques, motifs, or materials which you plan to favor in this new series?
Eve: I think of the harvest, of fruit before it goes to the press, of the new wine, and of growing hops. Of tourmalines, green sapphires, rubies, gold in warm tones, and lush pearls…
Q: Does ‘spirit’-uality hold a place in your work?
Eve: I am thankful to our Maker for allowing us to keep the gallery flowing all these years!
Q: As a well-travelled citizen of the world, what is the best “spirit” you have ever encountered…either drinking or otherwise!
Eve: We spent some years living in Switzerland, where people do not make friends as readily as we do – but when they finally do, friendship is marked by epic Sunday formal lunches, lasting till evening! Many good bottles are enjoyed amid lively conversation, and by the end of the day, all stand empty. But no one is tipsy – just in great spirits! So this series is a celebration of the human bond – a time when strife recedes, when tolerance and good humor remind us we need each other.
The new series will be revealed Saturday, November 4, 2017 from 1:00p.m – 7:00 p.m. at the Eve J. Alfille Gallery and Studio, with guests enjoying a “Bubbly Bar” and festive refreshments, a live music ensemble, raffle prizes, and Evanston-made art jewelry.
Evanston, IL – Raise your glass, it’s time to toast three decades of gorgeous fine art jewelry! Enjoy an intoxicating array of brand new designs from the series “In Great Spirits,” designed by Eve herself in anticipation of the 30th anniversary of the Eve J. Alfille Gallery & Studio. Come see what she’s been brewing, and join in the ‘spirit’ of the day!
A series which exists as a celebration in itself could obviously draw inspiration from many different avenues…in this series, Eve’s mind escaped the familiarity of downtown Evanston to wander the countryside. “I think of the harvest,” says Eve of her designs “…of fruit before it goes to the press, of the new wine, and of growing hops.” Such a robust palette of flavors will be expressed through a wearable cornucopia of “tourmalines, green sapphires, rubies, gold in warm tones, and lush pearls” sure to please even the choosiest sommelier.
Naturally, never satisfied to keep things at just face value, this delectable dessert of a series has a second layer of meaning hidden beneath its’ initial crust: “you can rage at the dying of the light, you can go off on the road less traveled by, but deep down, we are social animals, and derive warmth from celebrating together such things as the harvest, a wedding or a good death,” elaborates Eve, “so this series is a celebration of the human bond – a time when strife recedes, and when tolerance and good humor remind us we need each other.”
The opening celebration will feature a “Bubbly Bar” and other luxurious libations, mouthwatering morsels (including a visit from the famous Stan’s Donuts truck!) and the opportunity to win either a Chopping Block Gift Basket worth $200, or an Eve Alfille “In Great Spirits” necklace, no purchase necessary! Revelers will also enjoy a live classical ensemble, and will receive a 30th Anniversary Series charm with a purchase of $750 or more during the party! Join us in ‘popping the cork’ on November 4, 2017 from 1:00 p.m – 7:00 p.m. at the Eve J. Alfille Gallery and Studio. Please send RSVPs to either 847-869-7920 or firstname.lastname@example.org. To learn more about Eve Alfille and see more of her works, visit www.evejewelry.com.
About Eve J. Alfille Gallery & Studio
French-born artist, archeologist and gem expert, Eve Alfille opened her Evanston, IL-based gallery and studio in 1987. The Eve J. Alfille Gallery & Studio creates one-of-a-kind, art-inspired jewelry hand-crafted at the Gallery. Eve is also the founder of The Pearl Society and an officer of the International Pearl Association.
To the spiritual, garnets were some of the first stones ever carried on the body as a protective amulet. To the utilitarian, they are known for more industrial ends ranging from abrasive powders to water filtration. Obviously, they’re a superb choice when it comes to fashion; ranging in color from deep red to yellow to green, these stones evoke a wide variety of moods and looks…even looks that can kill!
Garnets can sometimes be found cut into a “bullet” shape: they’re an attractive cabochon that allows for a fun and unique variety of styles. It hasn’t always been such a playful cut, however…In 1892, during the conflict in Kashmir between the Hanzas and the British troops, bullet-shaped garnets were used – you guessed it – as actual bullets! It was believed by the Hanzas that, due to their similarity to the color of blood, they would be even deadlier than lead bullets. Even earlier in history, garnets were launched from sling bows! If you were lucky enough to be wearing the garnets rather that ‘receiving’ them, these stones might also have also been believed to cause invulnerability in battle to some cultures.
While garnets are of a 6.5-7.5 on the Mohs Hardness Scale, making them an excellent choice for jewelry as well as for as projectiles, we do recommend leaving the slingshot at home when you come visit our impressive collection of garnets here at the Eve Alfille Gallery & Studio. Swing by and check out the many different shapes, sizes and colors available in our ‘armory!’
A new series of fine art jewelry opening on Saturday, May 6, 2017 from 1:00p.m – 7:00 p.m. at the Eve J. Alfille Gallery and Studio, with guests enjoying festive refreshments, live music, and Evanston-made art jewelry.
Q: What first sparked your interest in life beneath the sea?
A: All of my childhood summers were spent near the North Seas…a roiling, vigorous stretch with frequent storms that others thought scary but I found beautiful, even to the flotsam on the beach after the storm. Calm days were spent collecting shells, seaweed, and observing small crustaceans burrowing at water’s edge.
Q: What was your thinking process behind the creation of “Undercurrents” and its underlying themes?
A: When you gaze at the ocean, the horizon seems limitless, so of course, you are going to feel that it is an infinitely expandable resource that needs no stewardship. Most of us that are not fishermen experience the animals that dwell therein as “Nemo” cartoon characters, or ingredients in their sushi.
Q: Is “Undercurrents” at all a reaction to climate change?
A: …Not specifically climate change, but anthropocene-induced deterioration, and the now-permanent gyre of plastic debris in the Pacific.
Q: Marine Biologist & past Pearl Society speaker Michelle Hoffman described Earth as a closed system…Does this have implications in your work?
A: More and more, we come to accept this.
Q: Several pieces in your new series feature long, rectangular compositions of undersea life that appear to have a very contained sense of space. What was your creative thinking behind these works?
A: So we can imagine ourselves as attendees at a future museum exhibit presenting bas reliefs of a vanished undersea world…The series of 10 gold bas reliefs will be mounted on bronze bases, straddling the world of sculpture and jewelry.
Q: In what ways might “Undercurrents” be an evolution of some undersea symbols you’ve explored in past series, like “Les Animaliers” and “Sea of Sargasso?”
A: “Les Animaliers” dealt, not with animals, but with how we represent them, anthropomorphize them, and reduce them into near-abstractions. “Sea of Sargasso” was a moody meditation on the allure and mystery that the “unknowable,” the seven seas, have held for humankind. With “Undercurrents,” I think we have to admit that the ocean’s resource is not finite…there are not really “many fish in the sea,” and we can no longer plead ignorance.
Q: What materials, styles, or motifs might we see in your new series?
A: Obviously, pearls, many, all kinds- even freshwater, since all waters are ultimately connected. Oceanic hues, green seaweed, corals, bright gems adorning rock fish, moonstone-bearing jellies, diamond trails of bubbles, and opals in all their shades…
Q: Just for fun: do you have a favorite sea creature, and if so, then why?
A: A quick, thoughtless answer would be: shells, based on my childhood summers by the sea. But the paradox is that, while collecting shells used to bring delight, seeing some actual living animals in their shell brought only fear and revulsion! Another marker of our human self-centeredness!