It was by chance that Forrest Armstrong landed on the doorstep (or in the yard, rather) of well-known renegades of avant-garde jewelry Alex & Lee in 2004. At the time, Armstrong was working as a landscaper while studying painting at California College of the Arts. The chance encounter would lead to an apprenticeship with the duo and the rest, as they say, is history.
But to say that jewelry making came to Armstrong by chance would be inaccurate. Creating is very much a part of his DNA. No one sees the world the way Armstrong does. From jewelry to interior design, his mind is full of wondrous possibilities that his hands carry out. It may have been by chance that he met the right people, but he was destined to create.
Simply put, the jewelry Armstrong designs under the name The Chrome Pearl, is art. Not art that sits on a pedestal or hangs on a wall, but “4th dimensional art” that moves through the world guided by its wearer. He uses bits of glass, broken tail lights found on a street after a fender bender perhaps, and even dead beetles as materials in his creations. He elevates these odd elements with resins imbued with metallic powders (sometimes MAC cosmetics, to be exact) and coiled threads, turning them into high-end pieces.
Here, Armstrong talks about his serendipitous start, what inspires him and, of course, his jewelry. If you’d like to check out his pieces, his work is displayed at The Brush and Easle Gallery and at Corrine Bell’s Folk Studio. You can also make an appointment with Armstrong at his studio to check out more of his amazing creations and, perhaps, find the piece meant just for you.
You can contact Armstrong at 559-974-5758 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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