Kim Nogueira is an automaton maker and award-winning studio jeweler who received her education apprenticing as a production goldsmith for 16 years, and continues to deepen her skill level with intensive workshops taught by renowned masters in the field. Her BA in sociology from Smith College supports the thought-based explorations that undergird her wearable art practice. Kim's work has been in juried and invitational exhibitions nationally and abroad, and has been published in magazines, art calendars and books, and is showcased most recently in Mark Fenn’s large-format compendium Narrative Jewelry: Tales from the Toolbox. Her home base for the past quarter of a century has been the tiny sub-tropical island of St John, in the US Virgin Islands.
Employing the traditional fabrication techniques of the goldsmith and enamelist in combination with contemporary metalsmithing innovations, I construct complex narratives in glass and metal that speak to the curiosities, challenges and marvels of our time, and to the human condition, most often through a metaphysical lens. The nexus of my work, its narrative component, is built with layers of text and imagery, which pepper small theatre-like frameworks, and draw the viewer into my story. My work quietly questions the status quo and examines how the past influences our present and future, and offers suggestions on how to go about changing the old narratives that no longer serve us.
Incorporating movement and interaction with tiny automata is my way of conjuring the enigma that is childhood wonder, which then draws attention to the marvels of our everyday life and the preciousness of the extraordinary journey that we are all on together.
For about a decade I have collected early to mid-twentieth century vending machine toys and gumball charms, Stanhope peep charms, antique mechanical toys and lilliputian Victorian curiosities. I work directly with these diminutive oddments, making molds of them for use in my work, deconstructing them to make the mechanical figures and details in my wearable automata. I manipulate them to form my own narrative, integrating universal themes in tandem with the questions of my own heart.