Chris Irick

Professor Jewelry and Metal Arts

What is your name?
Chris Irick

What courses do you teach?
Jewelry I & II

What is your educational background?
I took my first jewelry class at the age of 16 while I was a student at Booker T. Washington School for Visual & Performing Arts in Dallas, Texas. In 1993 I received my BFA in Jewelry & Metalsmithing with a minor in Ceramics and Glassblowing from Texas Tech University. In 1998 I received my MFA in Jewelry and Metalsmithing from UMass Dartmouth.

Describe some career highlights?
My work is in the permanent collection of the Smithsonian Museum of American Art. Last year I had a solo exhibition at the National Ornamental Metal Museum in Memphis, Tennessee. My work has been featured in more than 30 publications including Metalsmith, American Craft and Ornament magazines, The Metalsmith’s Book of Boxes & Lockets, The Penland Book Of Jewelry, New Rings: 500+ Designs From Around The World, 21st Century Jewelry, Art Jewelry Today 3, and The Art And Craft Of Making Jewelry.

List your collections.

  • Smithsonian Museum of American Art
  • Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute
  • Numerous private collections

List any ‘selected exhibitions’ you’d like mentioned.

  • SIGNS OF LIFE, Facèré Gallery, Seattle, Washington.
  • TRIBUTARIES: SOLO EXHIBITION, National Ornamental Metal Museum, Memphis, Tennessee.
  • FROM MINIMAL TO BLING: CONTEMPORARY STUDIO JEWELRY, Society of Arts & Crafts, Boston, Massachusetts.
  • DESIGN TO SCALE, Everson Museum of Art, Syracuse, New York.
  • FIVE WOMEN OF METAL, Heidi Lowe Gallery, Rehoboth Beach, Maryland.
  • THE ART OF FINE CRAFT, Elder Gallery, Nebraska Wesleyan University, Lincoln, Nebraska.
  • THE PENDANT SHOW, Velvet da Vinci Gallery, San Francisco, California.
  • Gallery, New York, New York.
  • MADE IN AMERICA: METALS ARTS INVITATIONAL EXHIBITION, Bevier Gallery, Rochester Institute of Technology, Rochester, New York.
  • 100 BROOCHES, Traveling exhibition: Velvet da Vinci Gallery, San Francisco, California; East Carolina University School of Art and Design; Bellagio Gallery, Ashville, North Carolina; Pacini Lubel Gallery, Seattle, Washington
  • JEWELS & GEMS, Renwick Gallery, Smithsonian Art Museum, Smithsonian Institution, Washington D.C.
  • CHARMED LIVES: NARRATIVES OF PERSONAL WISDOM, Facèré Art Jewelry Gallery, Seattle, Washington.
  • bigLITTLE: JEWELERS & SCULPTORS MAKING IT IN METAL, Crafts Cultural Arts Gallery, Oakland, California.
  • THE BRACELET, Sofa NYC and Yaw Gallery, Birmingham, Michigan.

Do you have a professional website or online portfolio you’d like us to link to? If so, what is the URL?

In two sentences or less, describe your teaching philosophy.
I strive to create an environment in my classes in which students feel they can push boundaries and be strong independent thinkers. Guiding a group of students with differences in experience, abilities and motivation toward their greatest potential as artists is one of my most important objectives as a teacher.

In two sentences or less, write a condensed version of your artist’s statement.
My work stems from multiple interests including technology, science, nature and psychology. Using these concepts as a basis for research, I design wearable objects, often utilizing traditional materials and techniques in contrast with non-traditional subject matter.

Why do you think art is important?
It is part of the human condition.

What inspires you as an artist?

List 3 adjectives that describe your current work.
I hope that viewers of my work will find it surprising, intelligent and beautiful.

What do you think is special about PrattMWP? (OR) Why do you like being a part of the PrattMWP Community?
That our sole focus is on foundations, unlike a four year school where the focus tends to be on upper level students. This, in combination with our small student body, student to faculty ratio and excellent facilities allows our students artistic abilities to grow extraordinarily during the two years they are with us.

What kind of students to you like to work with? What qualities do they possess?
Open-minded, hard-working and inquisitive students with a good sense of humor.