Paula Johnson

Kalispell, MT

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Jasper and Lava Open Net Crown by Paula Johnson

Jasper and Lava Open Net Crown

13″ x 10″ x 6″ – antler, lava rock, red jasper, beads – sold

Crowns should be adorned.

Bill Mittag

Paula Johnson

I have been an avid needle artist for over eight decades. My work is influenced by the love of form, color and texture, and this passion gave me the inspiration to explore and learn the art of bead weaving my later years. The abundance of colors and shapes of gem stones, and the brilliantly-captured patterns and motifs in tapestries, jewelry, and mosaics gave me the license to be bold and expand my creativity in my own work.
In my travels I discovered the ancient art of beadwork to be the universal language of many cultures, and it needs no interpretation. I use primarily a peyote stich in creating my weavings, and while my designs draw inspiration from many cultures, my patterns are entirely my own creations.

Why I use antlers in my work:
Once, on a trip to Missoula, a buck jumped from a ditch and struck my van head on, antlers piercing the windshield. Time stood still while we looked into each other’s eyes as he died; that moment still haunts me. While I sat on the side of the road, a native woman ran from her car, knelt by the deer and dipped her finger in his blood, chanting in her language. She proceeded to mark her face, and then she turned to me and said, “He is in the spirit world now.”
He was magnificent, antlers like a crown.
Crowns should be adorned.
The uniqueness of each shed antler I work with presents a challenge in selecting beads, gem stones, and colors that would be fit for a crown.
I hope I have captured the spirit and design with modern interpretation of this ancient craft.