Suzanne Golden Presents: Interviews with 36 Artists Who Innovate with Beads

Inspiration comes in many forms, but reading about artists and what inspires them, motivates them or got them into business, and how their work has evolved over time is probably the greatest for me. Suzanne Golden poses those questions and more in her latest book, Suzanne Golden Presents...

Golden is a beadwork designer herself (noted for her colorful beaded bracelets) and her research on 36 different artists she interviews is worth reading. Color photographs showcase the different artists' work.

The book doesn't have chapters, and the artists aren't listed in alphabetical order. I actually found it easier to read this way as I was surprised with each page, although they are all listed in the contents for navigation. With each artist that Golden interviews, you will find a brief biography written by the artists themselves. Photographs of their work include dimensions and the year it was created which is helpful when seeing how their work evolved over time.

The answers to the questions were thoughtful and some made you think. An example was Patricia Kraemer's answer to advice to other artists:
"Don't make 'stuff'; make a statement. And be patient. Let the beads show you what to do and which direction to take."
Loved that. And as far as my favorites go - it is hard to pick. But five artists really stood out for me.
  • Douglas W. Johnson - His work revolves around loom beading and creates gorgeous beadwork tapestries from them. It's almost like needlework design using tiny beads.
  • Linda Dolack - Holy cow - what do Peeps, Red Bull, Mallowmars, and Heinz Ketchup have in common? She painstakingly recreates the bold logos and containers of popular food brands.
  • Jan Huling - Huling takes the glue approach and glues down her beads on objects, but it is the designs she creates and the colors she uses that makes the objects pop.
  • Marina Dempster - If you are into shoes, she would be an artist whose work you have to have on display. Have to. I don't wear heels but if I had a real life pair of her shoes I'd wear them daily.
  • Arianne Van der Gaag - While other artists in the book go toward bold and bright, and sometimes outrageous, her work is soft and flowing and I found myself drawn to her designs.
For any designer, reading about the artists Golden has brought together in this book provides great inspiration. But you don't have to be a beadwork artist to appreciate this book. All the artists here prove that you just have to like what you do and have a passion for it for others to take notice. And much of the photographs of the different pieces are just short of showstopping.

Book Info:
Disclosure: This book was provided by the publisher and any opinions are my own.

Renee Shelton.