Light & Breezy - Page 4

Marin artist Kristen 'Bucko' Sinn's upbeat persona and playful spirit flow through her MCM-inspired jewelry
  Light & Breezy
Kristen's daughter Gigi models a Bing Bong Necklace and Star Hoops Earrings.

Kristen, who has taken many classes at College of Marin's jewelry program, wants to learn new techniques, including tube setting for setting stones.

Just a few years back, Professor Arima says, there was a "battle between art and craft" in the jewelry and other studio crafts fields. Among serious artist craftsmen there was a push away from making objects for everyday use towards creating "things that were more connected to concept and ideas and history and fine art."

But attitudes have changed, and functional crafts are finding a warmer welcome, even in academe.

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Orbit Necklace.

"I still teach that as well," Arima says of the conceptual approach. "But I'm also accepting of more production methods and more ideas related to making things that everyone is going to use every day, partially because of the practicality of making a living."

How does Kristen stand on the issue of art versus craft, or art as craft?

"Well, I'm definitely a craftsperson, but I think being an artist is…" she says and pauses. "I think I'm a craftsperson 80 percent of the time, but ten percent all of a sudden I'll come up with something really, really original; really, really great; and really hard to make, and challenging.

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Green Necklace.

"And then I finally spend all the time making it, thinking about it, changing it, designing it, and putting it together. And in the very end it comes out and it's really great. Then that's when you're an artist.

"But all the other times, when you're just kind of cranking out stuff, that's when you're a craftsperson. And I don't think there's anything wrong with being a craftsperson. I think it gets a bad rap."

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Turquoise Cosmos Necklace.


• Kristen 'Bucko' Sinn shows her work at the Marin Jewelers Guild, 1331 Fourth St, San Rafael. Visit her online at, and on Instagram

Photography: Patrick Yore of Brainblaze Advertising