Getting to Know Jewelry Designer John Wind
Providence, Rhode Island: This former capital of costume jewelry manufacturing is chockfull of old jewelry factories and quirky vintage fi nds. I come back with the greatest treasures.
Longevity and growth: Celebrating Maximal Art’s 25th anniversary this year is inspiring us in similar ways. The journey I’ve taken with Maximal’s president, Robbin Cook, and so many talented employees has been stellar!
Cabinet of curiosities: Borrowing from earlier times, we use a 1950s built-in closet from my grandfather’s men’s clothing store in Israel to house family photos, mementos and whimsical fi nds. I think it’s my favorite possession.
Collage: Since I was a kid, I’ve combined my favorite images into pictures that tell a story. Collage always has a place in my work—this year it was highlighted in our jeweled collars.
Modern art: I adore Picasso, Hockney and Warhol. I met Warhol in 1984 and still have a signed Polaroid he took of me! To keep up-to-date, nothing beats exploring the Venice Biennale, the granddaddy of contemporary art events.
Giving back: Generosity inspires me, whether it’s Brooke Astor or a friend volunteering at a food bank. Our own John Wind AIDS Jewelry Project raises money to fight AIDS, with 50 percent of sales going to local organizations ActionAIDS and the Mazzoni Center.
Vintage swank: [I love the album] Bobby Short Live at the Café Carlyle. The clever Cole Porter lyrics, smart patter and urbane buzz of the audience transports me and puts me in the mood to design our most glamorous jewelry.
Portobello Road flea market: I bought my first bits and pieces there to turn into jewelry when I studied at London’s Slade School of Fine Art. Every visit uncovers new inspirations.
My parents: Mom’s an abstract metal sculptor; Dad’s a marketing guru. Both have pursued their passions over a lifetime. Their creativity, vision and support have helped make me who I am today.
John’s gals: That’s our affectionate name for customers and friends. They inspire me and have kept the company going strong for 25 years.
John Wind has contributed to fashion spreads in Vogue, collaborated with Disney and Anthropologie, and had star clients such as Sandra Bullock and Julia Roberts. He says the secret to his success has been fi nding new ways to interpret his modern-vintage aesthetic.
PHOTOGRAPH BY BEN LEUNER