Episode 16 America’s Vintage Jewelry Legacy with Hugo Kohl of Hugo Kohl Jewelry
Combining his formal education in finance and economics with his passions of art, jewelry design and history, Hugo Kohl has created a hybrid career of sorts as jewelry historian, bench jeweler and artistic philosopher.
In 1993, Hugo had an experience at a scrapyard in Providence, Rhode Island that would begin a journey of discovery and recovery of the tools original to the means of making jewelry we’ve only been familiar with in antique collections and estate cases.
Originally, his formal education and degree was in finance and economics, his career in the finance industry was short lived.
While on vacation in Providence, Rhode Island, Hugo found the keys that rediscovered the tools and techniques used to create some of America’s greatest jewelry from the Industrial Age.
Since discovering the purpose of the tools he’d uncovered, he began the Museum of American Jewelry Design and Manufacturing.
From his boutique, workshop, and museum location in Harrisonburg, VA, he continues to use and demonstrate the same tools immigrants and skilled artisans used to introduce jewelry to the developing middle class of America during the Industrial Age.
Hugo shares the story of how he nurtures the legacy of American jewelry manufacturing from not only an artisan’s approach, but from a unique historical perspective as well.