Artisan Organization: Giuliana Valz-Gen
Update (June, 2019)
"I am Giuliana Valz Gen Rivera. If my friends and close family had to describe me, I'm more than sure they'd say that I am a staunch and fair woman, a woman impatient with what I hope to achieve both personally and professionally.
"Since I was a child, I've been very curious. I always noticed jewelry for its brightness and elegance. When I reached adolescence, I loved making special gifts and I wanted to make them myself. I knew that I had the ability to develop more artistic skills. But everything comes when it has to come, and it happens in a very organic and natural way. That is how I was initially trained in business administration. That was the foundation that helped me to become a businesswoman and to be able to perform at what I most wanted. Today I feel that there is nothing like doing something that you really love.
"There came a time in my life in which I told myself that, despite the difficult times, it was time to work on my own. The first thing that came to mind at that time was jewelry. It was always my favorite hobby. I thought about what I liked the most, what I was most passionate about, what I enjoyed doing without having to think about it as a job.
"So like everything at the beginning, it was a challenge to start working on my own. I decided to train a lot in workshops and take courses where research about techniques was fundamental. I wanted to know more about the world of jewelry, not only locally but globally, and learn from it and create designs that achieved differentiation. During these 14 years, I'm proud to have consolidated a great team of collaborators and friends with whom we share this art. We are strategic partners and we value our art, our knowledge, our transparency in communication, and our loyalty to the work we do as a team.
"In my art I want to preserve the ancestral techniques of filigree and colonial silverwork. The filigree technique is one of the oldest jewelry techniques. Today we know that the Egyptians, Etruscans and Greeks were the first to develop it. In Peru, filigree has been developed since the arrival of the Spaniards, and is part of the country's cultural heritage.
"My inspiration comes from life itself, from day to day, from everything I find and research. I love creation, design, drawing, and combining — they are the outcome of my training."
Original Artisan Story
"What really counts is innovation. My designs speak of tradition yet they are modern and feature the harmony between metal, pearls and gemstones. In a way, my work deals with the richness of nature. My motivation comes from a desire to complement female beauty with my designs, which are infused with Peruvian artistry.
"I was born in Lima on November 9, 1958. As a child, I loved creating my own jewelry to wear at parties, or give to friends as gifts. By the age of 14, I was already wearing my own creations.
"In college, I signed up for elective courses in jewelry making, where I learned the essentials of the craft. For me, this was a hobby I kept refining and perfecting. I was still taking courses when my husband passed away. At that point, I quit school to seek a steady job to support my young son. That has been the greatest challenge of my life.
"I decided to set up my own workshop where I could develop my jewelry designs. And it's a way to rescue ancestral techniques in gold and silver, reproducing colonial designs and fine filigree. I've researched the handcrafted jewelry styles developed in Peru over the centuries and have experimented with many great materials that I incorporate into my designs. Of all of those, I prefer Andean opal with its exquisite colors and extraordinary veins.
"Designing is easy. I just think of what I'd like to wear." Giuliana has been recognized for participation in Expo Peru Central America, Costa Rica and Panama in 2016 as well as in the Hong Kong International Jewellery Show that same year. She also exhibited her designs at the III International Congress of Jewelry and Goldsmithing in Lima in 2016."