Allison Sponhaltz

Accessories – Columbus, OH

I’ve always had a drive to create. I started young - first with painting, then ceramics, then wood, then glass. I’m drawn to organic mediums that have rules. Push clay too hard and it falls; push glass too far and it breaks. I like them because in those mediums lies a beauty - push just far enough and amazing things can happen. Those organic mediums tempt you to walk the line between magic and disaster, and it’s completely addictive. Metal never seemed to fit into that category to me. It seemed cold and static, but I was wrong. It was an opportunity to apprentice under two very talented jewelry designers, Ben and Kathryn Stewart, that changed my mind. Many days were spent under their guidance doing the repetitive tasks that form the foundation of skill. It was through this education that I began to understand that metal is organic. It has grain and personality and will. It doesn’t simply do what you want it to - it has to be coaxed slowly and with care. Push it too far and it lets you know. But push it just far enough and beautiful things happen. I was hooked. The winds of change blew and I moved back up North. But the muse of the metal kept calling, and so I went about the task of gathering tools and raw materials. At first I had very little of both, but it’s impressive what can be done with very little when the drive is there. Word of mouth spread and I found an audience for my work - and more tools and raw materials. Ten years later I’m still banging metal. And I feel lucky every time I pick up a hammer. ...more