James Carter Studio & School of Jewelry Arts originally opened its doors in Pensacola, Florida in December of 2007. After a successful 2 ½ years of teaching students from all over the country, the economy of Northwest Florida took a dive with the event of the BP oil spill. Pensacola as a destination was temporarily lost and it was in this time frame that we made the decision to move our school to a more economically sound area.
We chose Carrboro because it has great appeal as an artist town, with overflowing energy and diversity. We were lucky enough to find a perfect location in the historic Carr Mill Mall in the middle of town. Carr Mill Mall is a renovated mid-19th century cotton mill with soaring windows and lots of character. It is now home to many retail shops and businesses. With its rich history and architecture, Carr Mill Mall was the perfect location for us to settle. We are very excited to now call Carrboro home!
Our school is dedicated to teaching time-honored metalsmithing, jewelry techniques and cloisonné enameling. Our classes emphasize a high level of craftsmanship and individual student development.
James Carter is well known among his colleagues. With an MFA in Metalsmithing and 30 years in the field, he is a source of unending information and resources. His business experience compliments his studio experience and allows his students to be educated in the business of jewelry while learning and advancing their jewelry making skills.
His work has been described as “an exquisite dream, captured in glass and gold, equally beautiful as functional jewelry or as a piece of art separate from the body.” A master goldsmith, skilled designer and artist, James Carter has traveled the world cultivating inspiration and showing off his one-of-a-kind gold and silver jewelry. His exploration into cloisonné enameling has, over the past 30 years, led him to be featured in several industry publications and exhibitions across the globe.
Currently living in Chapel Hill, North Carolina with his family, James operates his own school in the nearby town of Carrboro where he teaches hands-on workshops in jewelry making and enameling. In 2010, he produced an instructional 2 disc DVD entitled “Metalsmithing Essentials – A Goldsmith’s Guide to Jewelry Techniques."
The level of fine craftsmanship that James Carter produces comes from a lifetime of adventure and experience. He became a globe-trekker in the 70’s, hitchhiking through Europe then joining the Merchant Marines. Traveling throughout the world, James was exposed to the primitive body adornment of tribal Africa, the gold antiquities of Egypt and the splendor of Russian gold work and enamels. After receiving a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Florida State University, James attended graduate school at Southern Illinois University, earning a Master of Fine Arts with a specialization in metals and enamels. During his understudy to renowned goldsmith, William Harper, Carter learned to create art from the soul, rather than from an expectation of how others might define it.
James Carter was awarded 1st place in enameling in the prestigious 2011 Saul Bell Design Award Competition, an international jewelry competition sponsored by Rio Grande jewelry supply. James is the recipient of an Individual Artist Fellowship from the Florida State Council of the Arts and several Awards of Excellence from the Trustees of the American Craft Council. His work has been shown at many galleries across North America, including the Helen Drutt Gallery in Philadelphia, the Nancy Yaw Gallery in Detroit, and Cellini in New York City. He has shown his work in several group shows and one person shows including SOFA Chicago, the Biennale of Enamel in Limoges, France, and the Downey Museum of Art in Los Angeles.
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