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Jewelry Design Retreat


In this retreat, attendees develop and refine their own jewelry design process through close personal instruction and feedback. While learning jewelry making skills at the jewelry bench, participants focus on fabrication using sheet and wire, including riveting, soldering and stone setting. Program includes a broad set of practical skills for both beginning and intermediate level jewelry makers. The retreat includes lectures and instruction from at least two additional professionals.

Dates and Fees

The Jewelry Design Retreat with Susan Beningfield will take place on June 11 through June 22, 2018, from 9:00am to 5:00pm at Otis College of Art and Design. Tuition for the program is $1,675. The deadline for applications is May 23, 2018.

On-campus housing and board may be available for an additional fee, please indicate on the application form if you are interested in this option.

Important fee and registration information: 

  • To Register: Use the Apply Now button below and submit your information and the $20 registration fee by May 23, 2018.
  • Enrollment notifications will be sent by May 25 and a $350 deposit is required by May 30, 2018 to secure your place in the retreat. This deposit will go towards the total $1,675 for the retreat. The full balance is due Friday, June 8, 2018.
  • A basic tool kit can be purchased for approximately $200 from the instructor on day one; you need only purchase the tools you don’t have. Material costs vary depending on metal selected and the size of pieces created. Copper or silver sheet and wire also available for purchase.
  • To give everyone the best experience possible, the program is limited to 12 participants.
  • Additional information will be sent to all participants after registration.


Mentor Artists 

Jo Lauria, Program Director

LauriaJo Lauria is a curator, writer, educator, and museum consultant specializing in design and decorative arts. Formerly she held the position of assistant curator at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Lauria is the organizer of several national touring exhibitions as well as numerous museum-based surveys of craft, design, and decorative arts. Most recently, she organized two design exhibitions for 2015 and 2016, one showcasing the exquisite ceramics of Ralph Bacerra for Otis College of Art and Design (LA), and the other featuring the visionary architecture of William F. Cody for the Architecture and Design Museum (LA). Ongoing, she has consulted with museums and private clients on acquisitions for their permanent collections and/or portfolios. Additionally, for the last five years Lauria has served as Mentor Faculty at Otis College of Art and Design.

Susan Beningfield, Lead Faculty

Susan BeningfieldMs. Beningfield is an architect and design of fine jewelry. She launched her company in 2009, producing custom made jewelry that is unmistakably sculptural, reflecting her years of practice as a design architect and her fascination with natural lines and sensual forms and her view of space as a material which shapes the object. Her South African upbringing imbued in her a love of nature and a clear preference for creating bold and elegant design work. She also teaches 3D Digital Design in Otis College's Product Design program.



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