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Get to Know the Artist Peter Emerson and His Works

When Creativity and Quality Meet

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My work is inspired by the fauna and the tree life that is found in the swamps and marshes of the South. I specifically draw from the swamps and bayou of Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, Florida, and Alabama, where I have had the privilege of traveling and living during the formative years of my life.

Experiencing these unique environments has provided a strong and inspirational library of ideas that I can now draw from, or more exactly, work with, because I have found that the various  shapes and forms that once  surrounded me are now emerging from within me, weaving their way through my designs quite naturally. Whether it's a barren tree in winter, with its fluid silhouettes and forms, or the mysterious, expressive root structure of an old cypress, or, and especially, the bromeliads of the Florida everglades, with their graceful growth patterns as they attach themselves to the sides of trees.

I seek to work with the life force of all the unique Southern wetland flora to create unique jewelry  and hollowware.

About the processes Peter Emerson uses to create his art:


In 1757, a young Silversmith, Paul Revere, returned to Boston from a short commission in the French and Indian War to become the new master of his family's silver shop. Revere raised metal into shapes and pounded flat metal using hammers and anvils to create exceptional silver and gold vessels, flatware, buttons and buckles. 


A few master silversmiths continue practicing this vanishing craft and technique at the Paul Revere House, Colonial Williamsburg, and at Peter Emerson's Silversmith shop in historic downtown Brenham, Texas. 


Giant tree stumps serve as workstations for a curious variety of aged hammers, obscure tools and anvils where Peter Emerson creates unique masterpieces in the proven style of the old masters. 


One of the oldest hollowware techniques Emerson uses is known as raising. This timeless process involves taking a flat piece of silver or copper and forming it over tools, called stakes, used to create a pattern. The artist meticulously hammers with the aid of chasing tools in order to create unique shapes and finishes. The process is similar in concept to throwing an urn from a ball of clay, but the technique of shaping metal with hand tools is significantly more time consuming. 


A second hollowware technique employed by Emerson is spinning. This process involves taking a disk shaped sheet of copper or silver and spinning it over a pattern on a machine similar to a wood lathe. Emerson uses special tools to form the disk over the pattern while it is spinning. 

Peter crafts a variety of jewelry using sterling silver, copper, bronze and Shibuichi — a Japanese silver and copper alloy. His preferred technique of lost wax casting involves creating metal jewelry from his original sculptured designs. After cleaning and finishing the jewelry, he often adds a hand hammered finish or patina to the surface. The ancient process of lost wax casting was the jewelry maker's preferred method throughout many cultures until the 18th century, when more cost effective techniques gained popularity. 


In 1866, a gunfight between Brenham citizens and occupying Union forces escalated into the burning of a substantial portion of the downtown district. Brenham rebuilt and recovered, but with a network of underground cisterns to ensure water would be readily available to prevent future infernos. One of these historic cisterns is located inside a building that later became the Rex Theatre — Brenham's first movie theater. In 1998, Peter Emerson purchased and restored the crumbling building into a silversmith's workshop and retail gallery of silver and copper jewelry, pottery, and art glass creations. 


Peter Emerson earned his Bachelor of Fine Art in Sculpture from the University of Mississippi in 1992 and Master of Fine Arts in Metalsmithing and Jewelry Design from Indiana University in 1996. Emerson has studied art and jewelry making throughout the US, and exhibited his work for the Worship Company of Goldsmiths Exhibition in London, England. Peter has continued to study and teach at a lengthy list of university workshops on jewelry and design, watch making, sculpture, blacksmithing and 3D design. 


Emerson is constantly expanding his artistic talents into new endeavors including wood engraving, guitar making and fine watch design. The Peter Emerson Silversmith Gallery is open most weekends at 205 East Main Street, Brenham, Texas, 979-251-7747. 


Texas Handcrafted Sterling Silver Jewelry Supplier

Whether you want to take a beautiful piece of Texas jewelry home from your trip as a souvenir or you’re moving away and want to bring the spirit of your hometown with you, Peter Emerson Silversmith is the place to shop. We boast a collection of Texas handcrafted silver jewelry anyone would be proud to own. Check out our collection at the Peter Emerson Silversmith Gallery, or keep reading to learn more about our accolades.

Our Artist

Peter Emerson is a silversmith and jewelry maker now, but he got his start in sculpture over 30 years ago. In 1992, he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in sculpture, and he then set his sights on a master’s degree in Metalsmithing and Jewelry Design, which he accomplished by 1996.


Since then, he’s been teaching workshops at universities in the US and creating beautiful art for display and sale as far as London, England. Emerson’s skills have expanded to include jewelry design, watchmaking, blacksmithing, and 3D design, in addition to his prowess with sculpture and jewelry-making. He’s constantly seeking to expand his skills and is currently learning wood engraving and guitar-making.

Our Gallery

The Peter Emerson Silversmith Gallery is proud to show off the work of our resident silversmith. We are open most weekends for browsing, so if you’re near Brenham, you should stop by to take a look. Plus, our Texas handcrafted sterling silver jewelry is both beautiful and well made, so whether you need an anniversary gift or you just want to treat yourself, our gorgeous pieces are just the ticket.


Even if you aren’t near Brenham, our jewelry collection can be viewed and purchased online. Browse our online store at your convenience or stop by for the experience. Whatever you choose, we’re sure you’ll love what have to offer.


To learn more, fill out our contact form or call us at (979) 251-7747.

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