Annie Grimes Williams holds a BFA in Metal Design from East Carolina University. She currently lives in Winston-Salem, NC and works full time as a metal smith, making work in her studio and traveling to exhibit in Craft Fairs and show in galleries.
Annie is an exhibiting member of Piedmont Craftsmen Guild and Carolina Designer Craftsmen Guild. She also teaches metalsmithing and enameling workshops at Sawtooth School for Visual Art. Annie uses traditional metalsmithing techniques with a contemporary style. Her work focuses on organic shapes and forms with a modern color palette, making for unique and stunning enamel jewelry.
My work is primarily influenced by my fascination with forms and their interior spaces, by color, and by my affinity for the sea and the allure it holds for me. I feel that we are all connected to the sea and to one another on a very primal level.
I am particularly drawn to the tiny creatures found in tide pools: urchins, anemones, weird little brightly colored pod forms that seem to be somewhere between plant and animal. These pieces also appeal to my desire to draw focus to interior spaces. In nature, these forms often have dark or even dull exteriors, but on the occasion that they open up, there is a burst of unexpected color and beauty.
I use traditional metalsmithing techniques, such as shell forming, piercing, and enameling as well as contemporary and experimental techniques like torch fired liquid enamels. This allows me to create very unique pieces that still speak to my passion for shape and form but highlight the organic nature of the liquid enamel as well.
Traditionally, I have used kiln firing exclusively in my enamel work, but through adding the torch firing techniques, I am able to more precisely control the application of heat to the piece and can experiment with drawing the oxides of the copper base metal up through the enamel layer to create organic patterns and colors in a way that I have never been able to before. I find I am constantly inspired by the techniques I use and my desire to push them to new levels.