One pair does sculpture. The other does jewels. Light, metal, glass – each brings a different element to the table.
“We’re the four seasons,” Dave Myers said.
The Indianola sculptor and metalsmith is one of four area artists comprising Madrone Lane’s newest addition. Myers and Kelly Asadorian are Myorian Studio; Laurie Rosenberg and Sara Baetz are Ginger Jewelry.
Together, they’re Ginger.
The two pairs of artists had encountered each other over the years at shows and fairs. Rosenberg and Baetz sold handmade jewelry under the moniker inspired by their similarly hued tresses. Myers and Asadorian sold their dramatic metal and glass sculptures, sconces and other creations.
The work existed on different scales – adornment for the body versus adornment for the home and garden. But there was a lot of commonality.
Both ventures consisted of a duo making their products together, a fusing of talent, if you will. They all had young kids, seven among them. Asadorian and Rosenberg had each been art teachers, Asadorian most recently at Wilkes and Ordway elementary schools, and Rosenberg at St. Cecilia Catholic School. Each admired the other’s aesthetic.
More importantly, they got along famously, each agreeing that the other was completely fun. And at one art show in 2006, they were finally positioned next to each other for a long, heady weekend.
“That’s when we fell in love,” Asadorian said. “That’s when the sparks flew.”
Having made jewelry together for years, becoming seasoned sellers in the process, Rosenberg and Baetz had long since wanted a retail space.
They’d kept their eyes on a cozy storefront at 124 Madrone Lane, seeing it go from venture to venture. They bided their time.
“We knew it was ours,” Baetz said.
Meanwhile, Myers said, he and Asadorian were at the point in their lives and careers where they, too, wanted a spot.
Myorian Studio did a thriving commission business that included gates, banisters, sconces, large-scale garden art and other custom on-site work. But they wanted to be able to showcase their smaller, non-commissioned pieces in an environment they had control over. They also wished to be able to see, and be seen by, their customers.
“We weren’t ready to have our own shop by any means. The partnership gives us the ability to have our shop, and our lives,” Myers said.
Asadorian and Myers met in art school and went on to develop synergy in life and in the work they produce. Glass and metal are natural companions, they said.
Myers is interested in form, a focus that manifests itself in both lightness and strength in each piece, whether it’s a frame for a light box or sconce; a banister; or a table modeled on a vintage ironing board, with sculptural legs and a hand-carved wooden top. Line and flow are his major concerns. Color is not.
“I’m his color,” Asadorian said.
Asadorian produces everything from usable plates to dramatic light-box covers to fused glass hangings to jewel-toned half-spheres, later set into Myers’ rusted metal sculptures. The textile-inspired pieces are graceful, vibrant, dramatic and bubbly. They’re happy.
The overall Myorian vibe, Rosenberg said, is “functional, and you like to have it around.”
Rosenberg and Baetz, “the Ginger girls,” began making jewelry when their kids hit kindergarten. The two had known each other for ages – Baetz grew up on Bainbridge with Rosenberg’s husband – and were like sisters.
When Baetz hit a creative wall with her primarily leather pieces, she opted to join Rosenberg in her quest to craft jeweled adornments featuring the most charming, cool, quirky and pretty baubles possible.
Each creation has a strong graphic quality, with dramatic clasps and bold color combinations they describe as “happy accidents.”
A vintage turquoise bead, for instance, might turn up on a slender chain that’s then woven into a set of wide silver links. A brilliant opalescent shell could be paired with a triple strand of tiny, jet-black beads to create a choker that’s a study in contrasts.
Rosenberg has a knack for scouting out great materials – she won’t reveal her sources – while Baetz brainstorms ideas. Rosenberg may come up with a pattern, while Baetz plays on the theme as she constructs. It’s a back-and-forth working rhythm that’s easy and fun.
Just as each pair collaborates seamlessly and with little stress, the four individuals have found a complementary working rhythm that’s balanced and anchored.
Business decisions have come easily, and having plenty of hands to run the shop means that everyone can put in time without throwing their home lives or creative endeavors out of whack.
The quartet’s combined aesthetic has resulted in a storefront that’s not just vibrant and harmonious, but sophisticated and on par with boutiques found in any major city.
One customer described it as “the big sparkle, and the little sparkle.” Another browser, visiting from L.A., told the Ginger crew that Bainbridge is better than any other gallery town she’s been to.
That compliment engendered a strong sense of satisfaction in becoming part of the Bainbridge arts-retail community, with each other’s support, and on their own terms.
“We don’t really want to sell something – we want people to fall in love with it,” Rosenberg said. “We don’t ever want to talk someone into something.”