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Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Modern jewelry: Betty Cooke

Betty Cooke (1924- ) is an American jewelry designer. She received a degree in fine art from Johns Hopkins University and also studied at the Maryland Institute of Art, where the taught a course called "Design and Materials" for several years after graduating.

During her early college years at Johns Hopkins, she had apprenticed with a local jeweler whose designs were very dainty and floral. She taught Cooke to solder, but Cooke's modern designs were all her own.

In the 1940s, Cooke packed up a box of her jewelry and made a trip across the United States, trying to persuade retailers to carry her work. Along the way she stopped by the Walker Art Center, which was putting together a show. They included several of her pieces in their 1948 Good Design show, which helped launch her career.

Over the years, Cooke's work has been seen on the fashion runway, included in State Department tours overseas, has been acquired for collections of prestigious museums, and has won numerous prizes and awards, most notably the De Beers Diamond Today awards in 1979 and 1981.

Cooke has also collaborated with her architect husband, William Steinmetz.

From and

Gold and jade ring

Silver bird brooch - Zuburbia

Gold and lapis bead ring

Silver and quartz neck ring

Silver and wood brooch

Silver and brass brooch

Silver and plexiglass brooch

Gold ring

1 comment:

  1. This is a wonderful tribute to a woman that I have known for 66 years as she is my aunt. She is a wonderful person always full of positive energy and encouragement to others... and an eye to shape metal, wood and stone into delighful gifs for the eye.