Joy Fire

The act of forging is important to me on a personal level. Bringing something into objective reality is a philosophical act that I use to reaffirm my existence and purpose. Forging is an opportunity to have a real and meaningful experience, and I have the immense privilege to have the time, space, and resources to engage in it. 

As I was finishing a degree in studio art in 2011, I was extremely lucky to find and apprentice at an architectural ironworks shop called Santa Barbara Forge and Iron. This is where I was introduced to blacksmithing, and I worked there for several years as a production assistant. My boss, Dan Patterson, let me use the shop after hours to work on my own designs, and I focused on wood and metal furniture and other functional art.

In 2014 I moved to Orange County, and after a few years rented a space in Santa Ana, where I create commissioned pieces and make my own work. I am a Certified Instructor with the California Blacksmith Association, a Certified Welder, a Community Education Instructor in blacksmithing and bronze casting, and a Welding Instructor at Orange Coast College. In 2020 I entered a two year MFA program at Claremont Graduate University and I look forward to graduating in 2022. 

I began volunteer organizing with SIBs in 2019 and I am delighted to be a part of such an excellent community and contribute to it however I can! 

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Photos by Keri Oberly