Artists in Residence - Dr. Melanie Corn - Diamond Cellar

Artists in Residence - Dr. Melanie Corn

We invited three celebrated Columbus creatives to design a piece of jewelry that could ultimately benefit their organizations.

Meet Dr. Melanie Corn, President of Columbus College of Art & Design. Melanie partnered with one of our world-class designers to create a bracelet inspired by CCAD's history and the rise of technology, fashion and creativity in modern-day Columbus. The bracelet will be auctioned off at the CCAD Fashion Show this May!

The first woman to lead CCAD is passionate about the idea that art can change culture—and she’s working to give students an education enabling them to do it. With a growing student body and alumni working around the globe at places from Nike to DreamWorks, Corn’s efforts are paying off.

Learn about the bracelet:

Art Nouveau meets contemporary design in this meaningful piece made of oxidized black silver and high polish silver with black and white diamonds. The Art Nouveau styling dates back to when CCAD was founded in 1879. And the contemporary design speaks a modern-day Columbus-a city on the rise in terms of technology, fashion and the creative economy, fueled in large part by CCAD. Dr. Corn liked the tension between organic and the industrial-speaking to both our Midwestern roots and our cutting-edge city of today.

Learn more about Melanie:

Q: Why are the arts important?

A: The arts are a strong economic force across the United States as well as here in Columbus, and they provide essential moments to stop, think and imagine a better world.

Q: Whose creativity is inspiring you right now? 

A: Jeni Britton Bauer, founder of Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams. She’s a CCAD board member, and the way that she approaches creative entrepreneurship is truly inspiring. Jeni is a role model for what it means to do what you love, live by your values and earn a great living with your artistic skills.

Q: What is the most interesting thing you’ve recently seen, heard or read?

A: I went to see Hamilton with my family. It was phenomenal. As an art historian and a lover of pop culture, I couldn’t get enough of the mashup of contemporary music and dance, relevant conversations about lasting social and political issues, and the story—however fictionalized—of our country’s founding.

Q: Ultimate Columbus Saturday? 

A: This city is thriving with art and culture every weekend, with much of it fueled by CCAD for the past 140 years. A perfect Saturday for me would be shopping at the CCAD Art Fair, then checking out works by our alumni throughout the Short North Gallery Hop, and closing the night with a drink at Seventh Son (also, by the way, co-founded by a CCAD alumna Jen Burton).

Q: What is the most meaningful piece of jewelry you own?

A: My engagement ring. I love wandering through antique shops, and many years ago, while visiting a friend in Seattle, I saw this plain silver ring with a square-cut blue opal. After returning home, my partner secretly reached out to our friend, who sent him the ring so he could propose. To me, this simple, quirky ring is precious; it represents a memory, which is what great jewelry does.

Read this article and much more in our newest addition of Accent Magazine!

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