RJM Online Exhibitions and About

Radical Jewelry Makeover (RJM) is an international community jewelry mining and recycling project. It brings together jewelers, working together to examine mining issues while making innovative jewelry from recycled sources.

CHECK OUT A NEW VIDEO - Featuring the work of Susie Ganch, artist and director of Radical Jewelry Makeover.

Radical Jewelry Makeover (RJM) is Ethical Metalsmiths' innovative community mining project. It raises awareness of the connection between mining, metalsmithing, activism, collaboration and art. It involves volunteer "miners", "smelters", "refiners", jewelers and metalsmiths working together to create a new and transparent supply chain. Ayla and Morgan sorting gold The project is both performance and event, linking recycling, reuse and collaborative work sessions with the creation of unique, innovative, handmade jewelry, concluding with an exhibition and reception. The project was designed and developed by Christina Miller and Susie Ganch and is now directed by Susie Ganch.

Each year, since 2007, Ethical Metalsmiths has organized Makeovers in new locations: Richmond, VA, Lancaster, PA, San Francisco, CA, Penland, NC and Brisbane, Australia, Santa Fe, NM, Boone, NC, Rock Hill, SC, Lebanon, NH, a returned to Richmond, VA in 2014. Jewelry programs in and around Boston, MA will host RJM in 2015.

To purchase jewelry created by RJM jewelers, please visit one of our future installments or contact us at radicalmakeover [at] gmail [dot] com

This video explains the project through stories and interviews with jewelry donors, metalsmiths and project directors Susie Ganch and Christina Miller. It was directed and produced by Sarah & Dana Films.

Here's how RJM works:
We ask the public to "mine" their homes, "uncovering" unwanted jewelry.  These “miners” deposit their “lodes” of outdated, broken, or unloved jewelry made from all types of materials ranging from gold and silver to plastic, plated metal, wood, shell, and beads to designated locations in hosting communities . Volunteer jewelers and metalsmiths working at participating institutions and studios reconstruct and transform this donated material into exciting new jewelry designs. By contributing their skills and time, these artists re-consider jewelry’s material origins,  The resulting fresh, unique, handmade, 100% recycled jewelry is then exhibited. RJM opening in Lancaster, PADonors receive discount coupons and proceeds from sales benefit Ethical Metalsmiths' efforts to educate and connect people with responsibly sourced materials and support future Editions of RJM. A portion of the proceeds are designated to student scholarships at hosting institutions and is available to emerging jewelers interested in continuing the research begun during RJM. 

Susie Ganch and Christina Miller created this project for Ethical Metalsmiths because all the doom and gloom of an irresponsible mining industry and the complicated web of information jewelers have to sift through is a burdensome reality to face. So why not explore/learn that information in a fun, high energy, workshop format WHILE using a jeweler's most honed skill, creating jewelry?!

Video Susie Ganch and RJM

Want to learn more about RJM?
Dedicated Radical Jewelry Makeover website
Radical Jewelry Makeover Cummulative Project Resume (PDF)