Didi Suydam sees the body as a landscape, with hills and valleys and open space on which to place, hang or drape her pieces.It is important for the piece to respond to the body, either through movement or how it feels and sits and interplays with the wearer. The pieces must complement and compliment the body simultaneously.Suydam believes wearing jewelry should be a sensual experience,physically and visually.
Sculpturally, she creates pure abstract forms that are not only wearable, but stand alone as objects. She looks for the essence of form: the spirit, the balance, the simple elegance. The reduced forms serve as personal icons for the wearer: an expression of inner power, or point of view. She often juxtaposes angular, architectural lines with organic, sensual forms demonstrating both a rational and intuitive approach to her work. Her shapes are influenced by ancient cultures and architecture as well as the world of nature. Her forms have an archetypal presence, often suggesting tribal masks, vessels, as well as the ancient ritual and tradition of body adornment and armor.
Abstractly, Suydam seems to intuitively remember and embody the spiritual and utilitarian history of body ornament through her work. She formalizes the ephemeral and the metaphysical as well . She interprets to communicate : her forms and patterns becoming a language that can be universally understood.
Suydam brings this language and the memory into the present, reinterpreting and distilling into what is ultimately a contemporary re-visioning of the traditional and the classic approaches to Jewelry.
Didi's one of a kind and limited edition pieces are hollow formed and hand fabricated. She forms her pieces from silver and gold sheet, using stakes ,dies, planishing hammers and dapping tools. She creates similar forms for her design collection which are cast into numerous configurations of earrings, bracelets and necklaces. She hand sands all pieces to a satin finish, sometimes oxidizing or highlighting them in 23 karat gold leaf.
1999- Present Jewelry and Fine Art Gallery Proprietor for Didi Suydam Contemporary
1985- present Jeweler, designer, maker of one-of-a-kind and limited edition art jewelry.
1985 BFA with Honors, Jewelry/Light Metals, Rhode Island School of Design, Providence, RI
European Honors Program, Rome, Italy
SELECTED AWARDS AND HONORS
2005 American Jewelry Design Council Competition, Runner-up
2004 Rhode Island State Council on the Arts, Fellowship in Design
2001 Rhode Island State Council on the Arts, Fellowship in Design
1995 Rhode Island State Council on the Arts, Fellowship in Crafts
1992 James Renwick Alliance Workshop and Lecture Series, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC
1988 National Endowment for the Arts, Visual Artists Fellowship Grant
1987 Artquest, Major Art Competition, Merit Award Winner in Crafts
Daphne Farago, Little Compton, RI
Helen Drutt English, Philadelphia, PA
Robert Lee Morris, New York, NY
American Art Museum, Washington, DC
Renwick Museum, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC
Racine Museum of Art, Racine, WI. Donated by Karen Johnson Boyd
1990 Rhode Island School of Design, Alumni Awards
2006 "Rock Collection", Jeweler'swerk Galerie, Washington DC
2002 Solo Exhibition, Gayle Willson Gallery, South Hampton, NY
1998 "Cross Pollination", Susan Cummins Gallery, Mill Valley, CA
1997 "New Work Highlight", Joanne Rapp Gallery, Scottsdale, AZ
1993 "Openings and Enclosures", Susan Cummins Gallery, Mill Valley, CA
1992 Solo Exhibition, Jewelers'werk Galerie, Washington D.C. In conjunction with Renwick Lecture Series.
1991 "New Forms in Metal", Anne Reed Gallery, Ketchum, ID
1990 Solo Exhibition, Artwear, New York, NY
1988 Solo Exhibition, Susan Cummins Gallery, Mill Valley, CA
1986 "Solo Highlight", Quadrum Gallery, Chestnut Hill, MA
SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS
2007 Ornamentum Holiday Earring Show
2006 Fidelity Investments Juried Jewelry and Ceramics Exhibiton, ProvidenceArtClub, RI
2005 Highlight Artist, Obsidian Gallery, Tucson, AZ
2004 SOFA NY, Represented by Jewelers'werk, Washington, DC
2004 "Group Exhibition", Taboo Studios, San Diego, CA
2003 The Perfect Gift, GalleryMateria, Scottsdale, AZ, 3-person show
2002 "Jewelry for the 21st Century", Four person show with Petra Class, Sandra Enterline and Valerie Mitchell. Objects of Desire, Louisville, KY
2002 SOFA NY, Represented by Jewelers' Werk Galerie, Washington, DC
2001 Two Person Exhibition, with Sarah Graham, Objects of Desire, Louisville, KY
2001 "Celebrating Contemporary Crafts 2001", Providence Art Club, Providence, RI
2001 Juried Members Show, Newport Art Museum, Newport, RI
2001 Highlight, Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, IN
2001 "Structure, Symbol " Susan Cummins Gallery, MillValley, CA. In conjunction with Sculptural Concerns" Exhibition Oakland, CA
1999 "Current Views", Pratt Fine Arts Center, Seattle, WA
1998-96"Revelations", A contemporary survey of jewelry by SNAG members traveling through the United Kingdom and North America.
1998 "Klaus Burgel, Joan Parcher, Didi Suydam, Martina Windels", Wheeler Gallery, Providence, RI
1997 "Invitational", Historical and contemporary overview of fine metal work from the latter half of the twentieth century. Carroll Reece Museum, East Tennessee State University, TN
1996 "American Jewelry: A Historical View", Mobilia Gallery, Cambridge, MA
1996 "Metalmania - Robert Lee Morris", Exhibition of private collection.FIT, NYC
1995 "One of a Kind: American Art Jewelry Today", The Hand and The Spirit, Scottsdale , AZ
1995 "Modern Masters", Habatat/Shaw Gallery, Pontiac, MI
1995 "Double Vision", Gallery I/O, New Orleans, LA and Wustum Museum, Racine, WI
1994-89 SOFA Exhibition, Chicago, IL. Represent by Susan Cummins Gallery, CA
1994 "Contemporary Jewelers: Nine Modern Masters", Habatat/Shaw Gallery, Pontiac, MI
1994 "Metals Invitational"
1994 "One of a Kind: American Art Jewelry Today", Mobilia Gallery, Cambridge, MA
1993 "Ten American Jewelers", Perimeter Gallery, Chicago, IL traveling to Wustum Museum, Racine, WI
1993 "From Our Vault to the Studio", Permanent Collection Exhibition Wustum Museum, Racine, WI
1992 "Wearables", American Craft Museum, New York, NY
1992 "Jewelry of the New World", Galerie Fur Moderne Kunst, Vienna, Austria
1992 "Seeds", Gallery Artists Exhibition, Artwear, New York, NY
1991 "Jewelries/Epiphanies", Museum of Decorative Arts, Prague Czechoslovakia
1991 "Artisan Highlight", Newport Harbor Art Museum, Newport Beach, CA
1990 "Jewelries/Epiphanies", Visual Arts Foundation, Boston, MA
1989 "Jewelry Invitational", Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, IN
1989 "The Art of Craft", Harcus Gallery, Boston, MA
1988 "Sculpture to Wear", Society for Arts and Crafts, Pittsford, PA
1988 "Volume", Two person exhibition, Sculpture to Wear Gallery, Lo
1988 "88 Jewels", San Francisco Craft and Folk Art Museum, San Francisco, CA
1987 "Dimensions '87'", National Juried Exhibition, Lenexa, KY
1987 "National Metal Arts Juried Exhibition", Metal Arts Guild, Kentfield, CA
1986 "Contemporary Metals USA II", Downey Art Museum, Downey, CA
1986 "Ten New Artists", Susan Cummins Gallery, Mill Valley, CA
1985 "Emerging Talent" Artwear, New York, NY
2011 500 Silver Designs,"The Powerful Allure of a Precious Metal:, Lark Publishing
2001 New England Crafts Connoisseur, Feature Article, Summer Issue.
1997 "The Art of Jewelry Design", Production Jewelry by 20 top designers, Deborah Krupenia, Pgs 42-47
1996 MetalSmith, "Exhibition in Print", Pg.45
1995 MetalSmith, "Double Vision", Review by Deb Stoner, Pg. 42, Fall Issue.
1994 "One of a Kind: American Art Jewelry Today", Susan Grant Lewin.
1993 MetalSmith, "The Natural Geometries of Didi Suydam", Frank Lewis, Pg.2Fall Issue.
1993 MetalSmith, "Crafts, Money, and Fear", Bruce Metcalf, Pg. 10, Summer Issue.
1993 MetalSmith, "Metamorphosis - Convertible Jewelry", Gail Brown, Pg. 48, Spring Issue.
1993 MetalSmith, "On the Nature Jewelry", Bruce Metcalf, Pg. 24, Winter Issue.
1992 Ornament, "New Art Forms Exhibition", Anne Ross, Pg. 89, Winter Issue.
1992 OZ European Jeweler, "6 Plus 1: Schmuck Aus Amerika", Pgs. 80-81, November Issue.
1990 Accent, "Arts and Crafts on the Rise", September Issue.
1990 Ornament, "A Very Special Venue: Baltimore", Summer Issue.
1989 American Craft, "Portfolio", August/September Issue.
1989 WSNE-TV, "Tuesday Nights", Interview with Three Local Artists, Providence, RI, June 6.
1989 MetalSmith, "Didi Suydam, Susan Cummings Gallery", Spring Issue.
1988 New Paper, "A Fine Metal - Crafting Jewelry as Wearable Art", December 10.
1987 Art New England
1987 Providence Journal, "Small Wonders", Feature Article/Styles Section, December 10.
1987 Metropolis, "By Design/Jewelry: Designers at a Turning Point", January.
DeNovo, Palo Alto, CA
LaCoste Gallery, Concord, MA
Lulo, Healdsburg, CA
Telluride Gallery of Fine Art, Telluride, CO
Ornamentum, Hudson, NY
Jewelers'werk Galerie, Washington, DC
2008 The Artful Home Catalogue, Fall 2008
2005Hellas Vogue, Editorial November Issue
2003 Rhode Island Monthly, "Style: Arm Candy", December Issue
2000 Rhode Island Monthly," Blue Chip Baubles", Hoilday Issue, Pg 12
1993 WWD "A", March, Pg. 44, Pendant
1991 Cosmopolitan, September, Pg. 216, Earrings
1991 WWD, July, Pg. 65, Bracelet
1990 Elle, November, Pg. 212, Necklace
1990 New York Magazine, May, Pg. 62, Bracelet
1990 Elle, April, Cover, Brooch
1990 Elle, June, Pgs. 182-183
1990 Elle, July, Pg. 127, Earrings
1990 Rhode Island Monthly, August, Pg. 174, Earrings
1990 Garnet Hill Natural Fibers Catalog, Fall
1989 New York Woman, November 1989, Pg. 118, Earrings
1989 Mirabella, June, Pgs. 184, 185, 188, 189, E
1989 Rolling Stone, May, Pg. 52, Earrings
1989 Harper's Bazaar, February, Pg. 106, Necklace
1989 Beauty Digest, January, Pg. 31, Earrings
1988 Rhode Island Monthly, December, Pg. 56, Earrings
1988 Essence, August, Cover, Earrings
1987 Elle, October, Pg. 259, Bracelets
1987 Harper's Bazaar, September, Pg. 342
1987 Fashion of the Times, August, Pg. 136
1987 Vogue, May, Pgs. 342, 344, Earrings
1987 Harper's Bazaar, January, Pg. 162
1986 Harper's Bazaar, June, Pg. 182, Earrings
1986 Harper's Bazaar, March, Pg. 292, Earrings