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Suggestions for a Beginner in Bangkok

Hi,

I have been reading postings on this site for quite some time now. I
hope that some of the Orchidians could give me some suggestions. I
am a beginner at jewery making (Revere Acadmy) with background
training in gemology (GIA and AIGS). I just moved back to Thailand
and am hoping to have my own studio so that I could make one of a
kind pieces. In the meanwhile, I would like to train under someone
here in Bangkok…sort of like an apprentice. I would love to learn
more by taking workshops as well but haven’t had any luck with
finding one in Asia. It’s too expensive to fly all the way from BKK
to the US for a one-week workshop ;-(

One of my main problems is that jewelry culture here is quite
different from where I was trained (Italy and the US.), where many
jewelry businesses are quite small and opreated by jewelers
themselves. Most of the contacts I have here are large-scaled
manufacturers and are making jewelry in hundreds of pieces. Moreover,
these contacts were quite taken aback when I told them that I would
be interested in actually sitting at a bench and making jewelry, not
working in a store or designing. To my understanding, jewely making
is not considered a very creative or glamorous job here…more like a
manual labour work. And I haven’t seen many female jewelers here at
all.

I am interested in learning from and/or working with someone who
works on a small scale business, making ‘artsy’ contemporary jewelry.
If you know of anyone who would not mind taking on an apprentice,
please let me know. I would really appreciate any help I could get.

Thank you,
Atty Tantivit

Atty,

An art-jeweler in Bangkok! Talk about bucking the tide. Last time I
was there I ran into two American “craftsmen” getting set up to
manufacture their lines in Bangkok to save money, cheap labor, etc.

Sounds like you would be the perfect agent for Americans needing a
hands on person to oversee production. If there are any real
art-jewelers in that town I would love to know about them.

Best of luck.
Richard
www.rwwise.com
For Information and sample chapters from my new book:

Atty - I took your question to a friend who lives most of the year
in Bangkok, and who knows something about the jewelry and gem
business. She concurs with your assessment of the manufacturing scale
there but had a few suggestions for refining your search for
independent designers/craftspeople:

  1. Check out the jewelry shops at the back of the Intercontinental
    Hotel on Sukhumvit. Perhaps they would be willing to share names of
    some of their jewelers with you.

  2. Inquire at the several universities in Bangkok, Thamasat U., e.g.

  3. Go to artists’ shows at galleries; painters and sculptors, etc.,
    may have friends who are jewelry artists.

Good luck with your search…!
margery epstein

Hello Atty

You haven’t received allot of responses for your search.

I feel I may understand your situation through my own experience,
being a goldsmith-artist a foreigner living in Asia. And I thought
that perhaps we could do something together in the future.

I have a small studio in Pune India, But I’m now looking for another
place to live and work. But don’t know where. You can see some of my
[older] work at http://www.akashjewels.com [my apology, this site
has to be remade and new work put into it, but I haven’t got it
together yet]

Atty, I’m looking for someone to work with. I’m definitely not
qualified to take on an apprentice. I too wish to find a master
goldsmith to learn from.

You seems to have study in some fancy places. And likely knows much
that I don’t. yes we are currently not in the same country but
perhaps there may be possibilities in the future.

This is also a sort of an Orchid introduction, long overdue.

I grow up in Israel, but have been living in India for many years.
here I started working as a goldsmith, learning alone, slowly without
even a book for the first few years. There was no money to go and
study. But in my case, it feels like a past life Karma that has to be
completed. And somehow my hands often seemed to know how to use the
tools, and what to do.

Now after 12 years I have a small studio with some nice tools and
still no money. Some people think I’m very good and my work unique.
some wait for a long time to have a ring made with me. But I know I’m
one of the slowest goldsmith in the world, and my self taught skills
won’t get me any decent employment in a western country.

It feels like the beauty that has to be expressed through the
jewellery hasn’t been really touched yet.

There is so much jewellery made around here, Yet it is either the
[beautiful and vast] traditional Indian jewellery, or the expansive
diamond and gold stuff copied from western catalogues. Or the
jewellery that other foreigners design and get made with local
jewellers. But in all these years, I came to know of only one other
foreigner goldsmith down in Goa.

If you want to contact me off line, the phone is 00919326038734
contact@akashjewels.com

Love and Light
akash

Hi Atty,

We are in a really similar position, maybe we can help each other
out? I trained for 2 years in Italy, too, and am moving to Bangkok
later this year. Please send me an email at: maogirl@yahoo.com.

I would love to hear from you!

Best,
Maloy