Upcoming Jewelry Classes

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Jewelry Department

Helen Shirk

Helen Shirk

Helen Shirk

Helen Shirk

Helen Shirk

Helen Shirk

Helen Shirk

Helen Shirk

Instructor: Helen Shirk

August 15–19, 2018 (Wednesday–Sunday, 9:30am–4:30 pm)
Intermediate level


Register Online Now
You may register online until two weeks prior to class start date. After that date, please call the registrar:
707 937-5818, ext. 10 or toll-free 800 653-3328, ext. 10


The ability of color to manipulate the viewer’s response to three-dimensional form is a powerful ingredient to explore in metalwork. Its transformative character can be strong or delicate, worn or immaculate, seductive or aggressive. A variety of metal forms and processes will be made and experimented with. The workshop will include demonstrations of hammer-forming processes in copper, soldering, texturing, cold connections, and methods of surface coloration (Prismacolor pencils, chemical patination, and paint). Students will work in malleable 18 and 20 gauge copper to develop combinations of form and color that give power and presence to their metalwork in both small and larger formats.

HELEN SHIRK was born in Buffalo, New York, and lives in San Diego, California. She is Professor of Art Emeritus at San Diego State University where she taught jewelry and metalwork in the School of Art and Design from 1975 to 2010.

Shirk graduated from Skidmore College (BS 1963) and Indiana University (MFA 1969). She received Fulbright (1963) and NEA grants (1978, 1988), and was elected a Fellow of the American Craft Council in 1999. In 2017 she received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Society of North American Goldsmiths.

Her metalwork has been exhibited in the U.S. and abroad and is in many public collections, including the Schmuckmuseum (Pforzheim), National Museum of Modern Art (Kyoto), Victoria and Albert Museum (London), National Gallery of Australia (Canberra), The Hermitage State Museum (St. Petersburg, Russia), the Oakland Museum, Houston Museum of Fine Arts, Carnegie Museum, Mint Museum of Craft and Design, Boston Museum of Fine Arts, and Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum.


Current MAC Members: $540
Non-members: $600 plus a $45 non-member registration fee

There is a registration fee of $45 for each class for non-members. Current Mendocino Art Center members do not pay a registration fee and may take 10% off each class registration. The discount is reflected in the prices above. Not a member yet? You may sign up below.
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Cancellations must be made in writing, either by mail or email. If you notify us at least 21 days prior to the first class meeting, you will receive a refund of tuition less a $45 cancellation fee. No refunds will be made after that date for any reason due to our contractual obligations and material acquisitions. If the Art Center is compelled to cancel a class you will receive a full tuition refund. Memberships are non-refundable as they are considered a donation to the Art Center.

Instructor materials fee: To be determined

Materials List

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$645: Non-member tuition price (includes a $45 registration fee)
$540: Current Mendocino Art Center member


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