Jewelry Artistry on display at TAM

Tacoma Art Museum Visitors have a new way to appreciate studio jewelry with a display at Tacoma Art Museum that prominently and effectively highlights the technical and creative artistry of these small artworks. The Christopher and Alida Latham Display showcases a wide variety of works from TAM’s Northwest studio jewelry collection including pieces by Ken Cory, Flora Book, Laurie Hall, Keith Lewis, Ruth Pennington, Kiff Slemmons, Ramona Solberg, and Nancy Worden among many others. The new display designed specifically to highlight over 100 works in Tacoma Art Museum’s central building. 

“When people think of Pacific Northwest art, they often think of studio art glass. But the region’s history as a key hub for studio art jewelry is rich and not nearly as well known,” says Margaret Bullock, Chief Curator. “TAM is fortunate to have a growing collection that illustrates the creativity, ingenuity, and craftsmanship of the Northwest’s, and particularly Washington’s, jewelry artists.” 

“We are incredibly grateful to the Lathams for their generosity in supporting this reimagined display, which allows us to prominently feature works by artists of our region and beyond who have had an impact on studio art jewelry,” says David Setford, Executive Director.  

TAM continues to be a key hub for studio art jewelry in the Northwest. The collection has grown to over 280 works. Several donors have added to it significantly from their personal collections: Flora Book, Sharon Campbell, Mia McEldowney, and Ramona Solberg. There are also numerous other individual gifts that reflect the dedication and generosity of the studio art jewelry community—artists, collectors, organizations, and enthusiasts. . Started in 1998 with 43 works from the estate of celebrated jewelry maker and teacher Ken Cory, the collection is expansive in its references and reflections on pop culture, politics, and personal experience to the art of metalworking, sculpture, and jewelry-making.

The display is made possible through the generous support of Christopher and Alida Latham. Additional funding for the installation provided by ArtsFund and the Guendolen Carkeek Plestcheeff Fund for the Decorative and Design Arts.