An Affair of the Art

Color and culture prevail in Serafina’s globally inspired jewelry



Jules Moore

Intricate details and an exotic aesthetic distinguish jewelry by Joshua Tree artist Serafina.

 

Bursting with color, texture, and cultural richness, Serafina’s elaborate, and sometimes psychedelic, jewelry draws you in with details and intricate knotting that defies the possibilities of the human hand.

Serafina, the studio name for the Joshua Tree–based jewelry artist, returns Nov. 9-10 to the Rancho Mirage Art Affaire, where she’ll show new bracelets, earrings, and necklaces.

Preparing for the festival in her 250-square-foot studio, Serafina has stones everywhere — bins of black onyx and African turquoise, for example — and pendants arranged on a table. “It’s organized chaos,” she says. “I have a constant flow of ideas. I was in the studio at 9 o’clock last night, and Dexter [her 5-year-old Dachshund] was staring at me, like it’s time to go in.”

Serafina creates between 10 and 20 pieces at a time, continually re-evaluating, refining, and tweaking. “I keep looking at them to see if they’re going to work,” she says.

Her passion traces back 30 years, when she dropped out of UC Berkeley and traveled to Europe.

“I never made it past Italy,” she says. “I saw a tapestry, and a woman who overheard me talking about it explained that it’s cavandoli.” Cavandoli is an ancient variety of macramé — the art of knotting by hand — used to create geometric and free-form patterns similar to weaving.

“[The woman] took me to an orphanage run by a convent in Florence, and these wonderful children were making cavandoli bracelets to sell for the convent farmer’s market. They taught me.”

Serafina pulls upholstery thread, which is stronger and available in more colors, as well as silk. She weaves in a stunning variety of stones — rainforest jasper, amethyst from Brazil, and African turquoise.

“I get a lot of the patterns and colors from the desert, especially when it’s in bloom,” she says. “I’ll see a color combination that I hadn’t seen before, like gray and lavender, and lavender and green.”

She also uses coprolites from digs in Moab, Utah. “It’s dinosaur poop,” she says. “I get unbelievable greens and reds, or sometimes oranges.”

Serafina’s prices range from $60 for earrings to $100 for a bracelet to between $300 and $500 for large necklaces.

Rancho Mirage Art Affaire is Nov. 9-10 from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Whitewater Park, 71560 San Jacinto Dr., Rancho Mirage. Call 760-324-4511.

CREDITS:
Jewelry Artist: Serafina
Photographer/Stylist: Jules Moore
Makeup Artist: Anastasia Braham
Hair: Giancarlo Tenebruso
Location: Las Casuelas Nuevas

Add your comment:
Edit Module
Desert Guide
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Related Articles

The Last Internationale Bring Provocative Edge to Joshua Tree Music Festival

The Last Internationale, appearing at the Joshua Tree Music Festival, are a powerful trio of modern day musical revolutionaries that ride the cusp between hard rock and folk-protest music.

Gene Jr & The Family Spurs Gabriella Evaro's Creative Projects at Joshua Tree Music Festival

Desert native Gabriella Evaro, who planted roots in the artisan village of Joshua Tree with her mother and siblings as a young girl, returns to the Joshua Tree Music Festival with a new musical production.

Songs From the Heart

After decades of singing backup for such legends as Elvis Presley, Dionne Warwick, Marvin Gaye, The Righteous Brothers, and Tom Jones, Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Darlene Love — now 73 — is busier than ever.

Jane Lynch, The von Trapps, Igudesman & Joo Lead Picks for McCallum's 2015-16 Season

Mitch Gershenfeld’s successful track record in booking shows audiences love led him to establish “Mitch’s Picks” to showcase artists the public may not be familiar with appearing at the McCallum Theatre in Palm Desert.

Open Call Gives Greater Palm Springs Area Talent a Chance to Shine

Kaitlyn Farley knew music was her calling from a young age, but opportunities like the annual Open Call at the McCallum Theatre took that passion to another level.
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Promotions + Contests

2014/15 Best of the Best

2014/15 Best of the Best

Palm Springs Life’s annual Best of the Best. Readers tell us who their choice is for the “Best of the Best” of the Coachella Valley in over 40 categories.
GuestLife Magical Monterey Bay Experience

GuestLife Magical Monterey Bay Experience

Palm Springs Life's Women in Business

Palm Springs Life's Women in Business

Winner profiles will be highlighted in a special section in Palm Springs Life’s May 2014 issue. Nominate Your Top Women in Business!
Pets on Parade 2015 Photo Contest

Pets on Parade 2015 Photo Contest

Enter your “Cutest Pet” photo in the Pets on Parade 2015 Photo Contest. Online users will be able to like the Cutest Pet photos from six (6) categories.
Cartoon Caption Contest

Cartoon Caption Contest

Each month, we provide a vintage 1950’s cartoon illustrated by Alice Rovinsky. You are invited to submit a caption or vote for your favorite caption.
Edit ModuleShow Tags