Radical Jewelry Makeover REPORT

RJM goes to two schools and has been turned into a tool-kit accessible to institutions like universities, high schools and art centers.

Portrait Susie Ganch

By Susie Ganch, Director of Radical Jewelry Makeover

This has been a busy year for Radial Jewelry Makeover!  The RJM Tool Kit was formalized over the summer and has already been put to use.  The kit contains all the tools an institution needs in order to run their own RJM:  

•    In-depth instructions and documents for guidance from start to finish.
•    Access to our favorite videos, articles and documentaries.
•    Custom demonstrations to enhance the collaborative and socially engaged project experience.

CLICK HERE to learn more about the RJM Tool Kit.

The kit has already been tested by two institutions:  Appalachian State University in Boone, NC, and High Tech High School located in San Diego, CA.  Both of these projects stretched RJM in new ways not yet explored!

Appalachian State University in Boone, NC
Susie Ganch, Radical Jewelry Makeover, presentation, Appalachian State University Ila Prouty, Assistant Professor at Appalachian State University invited RJM to collaborate with her students from the Art for Social Change Program.  Students enrolled in her class from across the campus, not necessarily art majors, and none of them were part of the jewelry/metals program.  Ila explained that, “[Students] used the RJM experience to begin thinking about how a series of art experiences/interventions can work together to create changes in awareness, thinking, and behavior.” Using RJM as a practical learning tool they teamed up with students from the metals program to not only collaborate one-on-one to design and create jewelry but also to plan the project for their campus.  Additionally, Jody Servon, Director of Catherine J. Smith Gallery for Appalachian State University, joined in with her team of students and assistant, Ben Wesemann. Martin Church, photography professor for the art department, volunteered his time by taking all the images of jewelry and donations.

Ring by Angela Bubash, recycled silver, cuttle bone castring, Meghan Class, radical jewelry makeoverbrooch, Clarissa Gotsch, radical jewelry makeover

Some of the highlights of the project included a film screening, ASA, radical jewelry makeoverwell-attended kick off and one full day of sorting the donated lode, where students worked closely with Susie Ganch, Director of RJM, Meg Roberts, from the RJM team, Margaret Yaukey and Angela Bubash, Appalachian State University metals faculty, and Lilith Nielander professional volunteer to learn how to assess material. Throughout the studio work period, the university hosted screenings of videos such as American Outrage. Tom Hansell, professor of film and photography, spoke after one of the screenings. Two successful pop-up exhibitions brought the project to a close.

radical jewelry makeover, pop up shop, appalachian state universityOne of the special aspects of this project was that Margaret Yaukey, Associate Professor and metal area head, converted the metal area into a workshop scenario for the 2-week work period. Students from all metal courses as well as from the Art for Social Change program were permitted to work any time of the day regardless of when their classes were scheduled.  In this way, students were free to collaborate on their projects. In a recent email exchange, Margaret wrote,
“ I must report that the experience has changed this department. Our on-going conversations about sustainable and responsible sourcing and all things ethical metalsmithing-like are inspiring. All of us were really dramatically changed by the experience.”

necklaces, Leann Rafferty, Radical Jewelry Makeover

High Tech High School
Marilyn Brogan, art teacher at High Tech High in San Diego, CA, requested information about RJM early this fall. 

high tech high, san diego, students working, radical jewelry makeover

Her goal was to introduce students to jewelry making with the addition of understanding recycling, reuse, and material sourcing. There were many challenges with this project, first being, the RJM team wasn’t able to visit!  As a result, this was the first RJM satellite project where all information was relayed via email, phone, Skype, and Dropbox. 

radical jewelry makeover, high tech high, san Diego, alexandra HartAlexandra Hart, a member of EM’s Futuring Committee and local jeweler, was a visiting artist, along with Demitra Thomloudis a student from San Diego State University. 

radical jewelry makeover, high tech high, san Diego, exhibitionIt was gratifying that even though the RJM team couldn’t be with the students and community, the Ethical Metalsmiths’ network of jewelers and artists was still able to help support Marilyn and her students.  High Tech High held their exhibition which featured work from over 50 students at a professional gallery, The Spot Barrio Logan on December 8th and we are eagerly waiting to hear how it went!






Thank you to everyone who collaborated in RJM Boone, NC:

  • Ila Prouty
  • Jody Servon
  • Margaret Yaukey
  • Angela Bubash
  • Martin Church
  • Ben Wesseman
  • Lilith Nielander
  • Hannah Crowell
  • Samantha Anderson
  • Francica Barros
  • Kate Bennett
  • Zach Breazeale
  • Shannon Brown
  • Nicholas Burkhalter
  • Luke Childs
  • Cody Clarke
  • Meghan Class
  • Zac Cone
  • Daniel Creech
  • Connor DeBussy
  • Alex Deimler
  • Matt Duncan
  • Mauryn Eisenschmidt
  • Michael Farmer
  • Brian Fleetwood
  • Meghan Gay
  • Olivia Giglio
  • Jessica Gilkey
  • Camren Conzalez
  • Clarissa Gotsch
  • Jasckson Hargett
  • Allison Hill
  • Anna Johnson
  • Elliot Keeley
  • Shauna Kirkland
  • Lindsay Kyle
  • Melissa Lee
  • Justin Leitner
  • Brett Lola
  • Sam Luellen
  • Paige Marcey
  • Tracey Marshall
  • Parker Miller
  • Gena Murfin
  • Meg Obertz
  • Sarah Parker
  • Alysia Puckett
  • Joseph Rackley
  • Leann Rafferty
  • Molly Rowland
  • Cassie Russell
  • Alexandra Salisbury
  • Hanna Scruggs
  • Hannah Shook
  • Glory Silwedel
  • Clay Simpson
  • Megan Smith
  • Kristin States
  • Riley Stephenson
  • Lydia Stewart
  • Madeline Streicher
  • Linda Threadgill
  • Allison Turi
  • Allie Wallace
  • Lindsey Willis
  • Lauren Yates



Thank you to everyone who collaborated in RJM Satellite Project - High Tech High, San Diego, CA:

  • Marilyn Brogan
  • Alexandra Hart – Visiting Artist
  • Demitra Thomloudis - Visiting Artist
  • Stevie Fox
  • Carly Mitchell
  • Branden Sade
  • Sigi Lopez
  • Belle Holder
  • James Ziebarth
  • Christopher Ochoa
  • Melina Shaw
  • Brooklynn Bucky
  • Desmond Carnell
  • Oneisha Dennis
  • Laura Mills
  • Michael De La Cruz
  • Ocean Hurd
  • Nick San Agustin
  • James Porter
  • Lucia A
  • Grady Becker
  • Kelsey Trevino
  • Callum Macdonald
  • Jacob McVicker
  • Anton Cujec
  • Joshua Addison
  • Evelin Acosta
  • Jonathan Munoz
  • Talon Brodeur
  • Nicholas Harding
  • Alexis Barajas
  • Jared Hays
  • Christian Putnam
  • Erin Smith
  • Miguel Lopez
  • Devynne Bothne
  • Jordan Hay
  • Devon Bubendorf
  • Nkosi Miller
  • Eroxi Klein
  • Paul Parnell
  • Kameron Arnold
  • Liam Calhoun
  • Donald Alexander
  • Nickayla Jefferson
  • Christine Bandejas
  • Matthew Bernal
  • Jack Moore
  • Chris Moran
  • Ulana Bounnak
  • Jillian Koons
  • Tiana Tate
  • Breanna Holcomb
  • Jack Moore