How A Jewelry Artist Is Using Her Creativity To Save Elephants In Africa – Forbes

When jewelry artist Alexandra Mor moved to Bali for a year she was looking to replenish her creative juices while learning Balinese craftsmanship. Her adventure took an unusual detour which made all the difference in finding herself, carving out a new outlet for her creativity and using it to bring attention to a larger cause.

Mor is known for elegant, well-crafted jewels with signature characteristics such as the use of large colored gemstones, “floating” diamond melee and knife-edge wire trim. In seven years she achieved critical acclaim and a strong following among jewelry loving consumers. However, in recounting her experience recently, she sounded like someone who was feeling burned-out.

Courtesy of Alexandra Mor

A necklace made of tagua seeds, baroque pearls and 22k gold beads with carved red wood lotus flower

“I was working for so long, so hard and grateful to achieve so many great things, but creatively I felt like I was not really connecting to my work and the balance between the business and my work,” she said. “At one point somebody told me you’re going to have to decide whether you’re a jewelry designer or a business woman. I’m not willing to let go of being a jewelry designer, being an artist, because that’s what makes what I do so special.”

Courtesy of Alexandra Mor

Alexandra Mor holds the tagua seed

In August, 2016, Mor, her husband Alon, and their three school-age children left their New York home and moved to Bali. While focusing on her creative process and immersing herself in Balinese craft and culture, she befriended Nadya Yuti Hutagalung, an Indonesian-Australian model and television host, who co-founded the organization, “Let Elephants Be Elephants,” and produced a documentary film of the same name to raise awareness about the connection between high levels of elephant poaching in Africa and the consumption of ivory in Asia.

Ken Kochey @ Sara Laird & Good Company

Alexandra Mor in Bali

It turned out that this chance encounter provided the creative spark Mor needed. “The film came at the right time,” she said.

Mor understood that poaching elephants for their tusks was a serious issue but when she saw the film she was shocked to learn the extent of the problem and the amount of jewelry and art objects still being made with ivory.

How A Jewelry Artist Is Using Her Creativity To Save Elephants In Africa – Forbes