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8th Annual International Gold Conference Set for April




(PRESS RELEASE) Initiatives in Art and Culture’s Eighth Annual International Gold Conference, entitled “Gold: Vortex, Virtues, and Values,” will take place Thursday, April 12, and Friday, April 13, at a new location: Bohemian National Hall, 321 East 73rd Street, New York City.

The conference will explore the range of gold’s subject matter, from responsible business practices throughout the worldwide supply chain to new trends in jewelry manufacturing, design, and apprenticeship. New frontiers in social media, government and legal affairs, and presentations by some of goldsmithing’s greatest artists, round out the two-day event. During conference breaks, attendees will have the opportunity to purchase books related to gold and jewelry, and there will be book signings.

The distinguished speakers include gold jewelry designers and goldsmiths Wendy Brandes, Blair Lauren Brown, Leo and Ginnie de Vroomen, Alexandra Mor and Katrin Zimmerman, as well as leaders in the responsible jewelry practices movement, such as David Bouffard, vice president, corporate affairs, Signet Jewelers; Stewart Grice, vice president, mill products, Hoover & Strong/Harmony Metals and Gems; Mark Hanna, chief marketing officer of Richline Group; Christina Miller, co-founder of Ethical Metalsmiths; and Monica Stephenson of Anza Gems.

Deborah Nicodemus, CEO of online retailer Moda Operandi, will take part in a conversation with Mickey Alam Khan, founder and editor-in-chief, Luxury Daily, on jewelry and new business models.

Also on the roster are sessions on gold pricing, block chain technology and regulatory updates, along with an examination of gold casting, a panel on cultivating goldsmithing skills in a new generation, and the latest on jewelry technology advancements.

A special presentation by Jane Short, the enameler commissioned by the Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths in London to create the 1999 Millennium Dish, will celebrate the craft of enameling.


A champagne reception and celebration of women in the jewelry world is also planned, with a presentation entitled: “A Rising Tide: Women and the Jewelry Industry,” led by Hedda Schupak, editor, The Centurion newsletter, and featuring Jenny Luker, president, Platinum Guild International, and president, Women’s Jewelry Association. Other speakers will be added as well.

“We’re thrilled with our list of speakers and sessions for the Eighth Annual Gold Conference,” said Lisa Koenigsberg, president of Initiatives in Art and Culture. “We are taking our characteristic cross disciplinary approach to gold, incorporating speakers from the worlds of art, fashion, design, jewelry, technology, craftsmanship, sustainability, marketing and business.

“There will be, as always, a special emphasis on responsible business practices in the jewelry supply chain, and new this year: a discussion on gender equality in the jewelry industry,” said Koenigsberg. “The opportunity to meet and network with leaders from all sectors of the gold industry around these diverse topics makes our conference a unique experience for all attendees.”

For more information, click here.


Initiatives in Art and Culture’s Eighth Annual Gold Conference Partial Session List
(Highlights as of February, 2018; more speakers and details to be added)

  • “Valuing Gold: Anatomy of an Asset,” featuring Jeffrey M. Christian, founder and managing director, CPM Group, a commodities research, consulting, financial advisory, asset management, and commodities management firm based in Brooklyn, NY.
  • “Who’s Got the Power? Influencers, Ethics, and the Regulation of Social Media,” with Wendy Brandes, jewelry designer and writer at Wendy Brandes Jewelry; Barbara Palumbo, writer and founder of and What’; Monica Stephenson, writer and founder of ANZA Gems, and Sara Yood, senior counsel, Jewelers Vigilance Committee (JVC). Moderator is writer Peggy Jo Donahue.
  • “Closing the Deal: Selling Jewelry Through Social Media,” with Brandes and Stephenson, and Palumbo as moderator. Other panelists will be added.
  • “Sustainable Beauty: The Pursuit of Ethical Jewelry,” with jewelry designer Blair Lauren Brown; Robert Goodman, founder, Robert Goodman Jewelers; Stewart Grice, vice president, mill products, Hoover & Strong / Harmony Metals and Gems; Christina Miller, owner, Christina T. Miller Consulting, as well as co-founder and chair of the advisory council, Ethical Metalsmiths; and Monica Stephenson of Anza Gems. Other panelists will be added.
  • “Casting: Transforming the World,” with Jen Townsend, co-author of CAST: Art and Objects Made Using Humanity’s Most Transformational Process (2017); Renée Zettle-Sterling, co-author CAST, professor, Grand Valley State University, and past president, Society of North American Goldsmiths; and Lin Stanionis, studio jeweler and visual art professor, Department of Visual Art, University of Kansas.
  • “Digital Dimensions: Technology in Transforming Behavior,” with Andrea Hill, founder and CEO, Hill Management Group.
  • “Full Steam Ahead: The Journey Towards Ethical Sourcing, Transparency, and Responsible Practices,” with David Bouffard, vice president, corporate affairs, Signet Jewelers; Aimée Boulanger, coordinator, Initiative for Responsible Mining Assurance (IRMA); Tiguidanke Camara, chairman and CEO of Tigui Mining Group; Elizabeth Orlando, economic officer, Bureau of Economic Affairs, Office of Threat Finance and Countermeasures, U.S. Department of State; Tiffany Stevens, president, JVC; and Ronnie Vanderlinden, president, Diamex Inc., Diamond Manufacturers & Importers Association of America, and the United States Jewelry Council. Moderator is Rob Bates, news director at JCK magazine.
  • A conversation with Alexandra Mor.

8th Annual International Gold Conference Set for April 

8th Annual International Gold Conference Set for April
Jane Short, Millennium Dish for the Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths. Engraved with champlevé 
and basse-taille enamel by Short, spun bowl section by Clive Burr, silversmith. Maker’s mark: Jane Short. 

    8th Annual International Gold Conference Set for April
Lin Stanionis, Between Nature and Grace, 18kt gold, pate de verre, sterling. Collection: Jon Blumb.



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