Arline Fisch

Arline Fisch is a jeweler and Professor (Emerita) of Art at San Diego State University. She studied art and jewelry at Skidmore College, the University of Illinois, and the School of Arts and Crafts in Copenhagen. Her work has been widely exhibited in the United States, Europe, and Australia and is represented in public collections around the world. She is a Director and Vice President of the World Crafts Council and a Trustee of the American Craft Council. In 1985 she was named a “Living Treasure of California” by the California legislature for her work as an artist, educator, author and contributor to the field of American crafts.


I have always been concerned with the making of jewelry to be worn, of unique works of art, which have the human body as their site. I try always to develop objects of personal adornment, which have dramatic impact yet do not place the wearer in the role of anonymous pedestal, forms which please and exalt the wearer. The strongest influences on my work have come from studies of ancient cultures - Etruscan, Egyptian, Greek, Pre-Columbian - from which I have derived direction, design courage and technical information.

I prefer working in a larger than usual scale, with collars, pectorals, head ornaments as favored formats. The use of textile structures such as weaving, plaiting, kitting enable me to produce pliable planes which conform readily to the human form, and which have a softness and warmth not always possible in metal. Most frequently I work in precious metals - silver, gold, platinum - which clearly reveal the interlaced structures. But I am also drawn to color as an element, particularly strong color. For many years I used feathers as a means of adding brilliance through vibrant color. Then I discovered anodized aluminum, which I use in very simple, non-textile constructions to make colorful, playful ornaments of large dimension.

I work on many things simultaneously, enjoying the rhythm of moving from one piece to another, from one process to another. Each process has particular characteristics, which affect the spirit and shape of the works; each material contributes a different personality. I enjoy the stimulation of variety and only wish there was more time in which to investigate, explore, experiment and fabricate exciting new personal adornments.






Museum of Arts and Design, New York City
Kunstindustrimuseet, Oslo, Norway
Museum of Applied Art, Trondheim, Norway
Museum of Fine Art, Boston
Natonal Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto, Japan
Racine Art Museum, WI
Royal Scottish Museum, Edinburgh, Scotland
Vatican Museum, Rome
Victoria & Albert Museum, London
Renwick Gallery of the National Museum of
American Art, Washington, D.C.