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[Honduras] Job Opportunities

To my fellow craftspersons, I would like to introduce myself before
posting the following employment oportunity.

I’m a Canadian Goldsmith who has recently moved to Honduras to direct
the development of a new jewelry business operating under the
auspices of a Canadian gold mining company. I began my own career 28
yrs ago with the late Canadian first nations artist Bill Reid at the
age of fifteen. Under his guidance I entered into a traditional 4yr.
appreticeship program with a high end Swiss jeweller on Canada’s west
coast and have been making strictly hand made jewelry in 18k, 19k
white and platinum ever since. Through my early association with
Bill I have occassionaly throughout my career continued to produce
works with other first nations artists as a technical resource and
collaborator. This association and my experience in producing larger
Objet d Arte’ in gold by traditional techniques has lead me to my
present situation. The parent company Merendon Mining and I
established a mandate to develop a jewelry program in Honduras as a
means of skills development and economic opportunity for this very
poor country. It is however extremely rich in great cultural
traditions. For example the Maya culture and Olmec which preceded
Mayan settlement. Merendon is a presently operating jewelry business
with two stores in Honduras and a workshop employing 12 jewellers and
two setters. My involvement in the program is to provide oversight
to the present workshop while the developement of a parallel workshop
takes place. The new workshop, in the same building has a mandate to
produce the finest quality fine handmade jewelry. Jewellers in
addition to myself to be recruited in N. America and Europe
according to the specific skills we need. In addition to producing
jewelry we will also, in relationship with and with exculsive and
granted authority of the archeological institute of Honduras produce
in gold, masterpieces of the Mayan culture. Already, several
qualified and specialized jewellers are making plans to join this
project from Canada and Europe.

I have two distinct opportunities to post here. The first is
immediate as follows;

We have an opening in the present workshop for a bilingual,
(english-spanish speaking) Production Manager to oversee production
and provide quality control to 12 jewelers and 2 setters. We are
looking for some one with a thorough knowledge of all basic
manufacturing techniques and processes from waxing and casting, basic
handmaking techniques, through setting and finishing. A practical
working knowledge of gemstones (diamonds and colored) an ability to
assess design from a marketplace perspective and an ability to
generate reports by computer are nescessary to the job. A sense of
adventure, and enjoying the people that you work with are desirable.
I am as the director keenly interested that the people who with a
sense of adventure join me in this have an opportunity for a high
level of personal and proffessional fulfilment and a structure with
which they can achieve this. Salary, incentives and benifits are
negotiable based on experience.

For the workshop that is presently under developement. In three to
four months this workshop will be completed. I’m informally putting
the word out for goldsmiths, professional enamellists, and diamond
setters. I have worked for 28 yrs with a considerable degree of
isolation from much of the trade. I’ve been asked by Merendon because
of the skill that I have achieved working in this isolation to head
up the developement of something that may be quite unique in the
world at this moment. I have been provided an open mandate to
attract the finest specific skills ie; raising and forming engraving,
assembly and working with local and historical resourses to create
culturaly significant works in gold. If you have significant skills
to contribute or if you know of an outstanding jeweler, diamond
setter, engraver please either respond directly or let them know of
the oportunity. I am involved myself for two principal reasons.
I’ve been presented the opportunity to do something worthwhile and
good in the world with the skills that I possess and that is to teach
people who have a richness of culture but are very poor, skills for
their own self expression and economic welfare. Not to mention to
have a great adventure in a truly beautiful country (if you are into
paragliding like me you will think you’ve gone to heaven). Second,
when I started my career with Bill Reid (and at the time I was very
impressionable) we would talk about somebody walking across the
desert two thousand years from now and stubbing there toe on
something that you had made. What we would want it to say to that
person about our culture or what people thought or believed in. There
are not many if any avenues for the skilled artists and craftspeople
today to have the chance to work on pieces that can even be
considered in those terms. I will find the right people to join
those already involved through networking in forums such as this. I
thank you for your attention and look forward to hearing from all
interested party’s.

Jeffrey Miller Merendon Jewelry
Tegucigalpa, Honduras