The thing about this city is that the amount of art available for you to support and consume is almost overwhelming. The community of artists expands at such a rate it makes the Macrisis dollar to peso exchange change look gradual. That’s where we come in — here at La La Lista we want to highlight some of the people that we believe are creating work in shared spaces we deem worthy of dragging your post-head banging Friday night neck to.About a year ago, neck-braced and coffee shop bound, I came across a fair. I stepped inside thinking I would glance around, contemplate a vegan cupcake, remember how much I value butter, and keep walking. Instead, I felt like I had stepped into the world of Cool-Chicks: Buenos Aires Edition, with stall-by-stall tips on what to wear, what pots to plant my succulents in, what beautifully printed books I needed to read.
I had stumbled into a homey little cramped space of young artists selling their work. It was my first visit to Juntas, a beautiful community that supports and promotes hand-made art and designs by local artists. It was here that I first saw the work of Julieta Morten. From illustrations to hand-made jewelry, her work is both mystical and familiar. It evokes ideas of strength within a friendship, with nods to witchcraft and the magic of the moon, but not in that bullshit, pre-teen kind of way. Her work is sleek, gold and silver hand cut metal, simple yet evocative. There are pieces that feel bold like wearing them will give you courage to march alongside your green pañuelo clad-comrades. And there are others that bring calm, grounding us with representations of nature. We caught up with her to ask her a bit about how she got started and how she supports the community of artists she’s a part of.
How did you start to make jewelry and what does your process look like?
I’ve been drawing and painting ever since I was really little. In 2015, I met Julia Alvarez and took her jewelry-making workshop (thanks to Noelia de Dobleufa who wrote a beautiful blog, where she uploaded a flyer about the workshop). I instantly fell in love with her (Julia’s) creations. I was so excited to be able to transform my illustrations into metal, to create a piece that someone could carry with them forever. So, I began with Julia’s workshop and took it for about two years. I learned so much. Today, I’m studying in the municipal school Joya Maestro Joyero Jorge Lukez. Slowly, I started to put together my own home workshop, producing small amounts on my own.
My pieces are born from illustrations, then they become designs, and from there I turn them into metal. I’m experimenting. They always turn out different than the original drawing, which I really enjoy. These days I work with my two siblings.
Who are your influences in jewelry making? Who are you influences in general?
My influences are the occult and the mystical, the moon, offerings to the divinities, and my fellow entrepreneurs with whom I’m sharing this path.
What music (if any) do you listen to while you work?
Right now, I listen to everything from Chelsea Wolf to Tyler, the Creator. I also listen to the radio, Futurock.
What do you hope to convey with your work?
I want to convey the importance of working by hand with love and responsibility—my love for amulets and small objects.
Tell me about Juntas. What is it and how does it work?
Juntas is a community of designers created by Julia, Sol y Julietas who have their own ventures: Miel (vintage clothing), Aurora Perez (clothing) and Singapur (notebooks). Once a month Juntas opens its doors to a ton of up and coming local works that range from clothes, ceramics, books, jewelry, food, plants etc. They rotate, offering new things each month. What you see the day of the fair, apart from the creations, is aesthetic care and strong camaraderie.
From your perspective what is the importance in today’s climate of having a fair where there are only women artists participating?
Not only women participate, there are ventures which are mixed. I think that nowadays the majority of us are deconstructing and creating beautiful unions through these descontructions.
How do you support artists here in Buenos Aires?
I really like to collaborate and work with other projects. For me, it’s super creative and enriching. I think the diffusion of knowledge is really important.
If you had to give advice to emerging artists what would you tell them?
To always love one another, always value your work, and surround yourself with good people.
Do you have a favorite piece, what is it and why is it your favorite?
I think that my favorite pieces are the Hidden Garden and the Cobra earrings. The garden is a locket with embroidery on the inside that always comes out differently, which I love. I feel like you can save your thoughts inside the locket. The cobras, because I think of them as the talismans of protection.