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Event Calendar

Thursday, June 17, 2021

WJA NorCal + WJA Miami | Deconstructing Gender in Jewelry

Start Date: 6/17/2021 7:00 PM EDT
End Date: 6/17/2021 8:30 PM EDT

Event Website:

Organization Name: WJA NorCal + WJA Miami

Tracey Carswell
Phone: (786) 265-9760


WJA Norcal + WJA Miami Present Conversations on Diversity:
Deconstructing Gender in Jewelry


In honor of Pride month, WJA NorCal and WJA Miami are coming together for an important conversation focusing on how gender impacts the jewelry industry. Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer (LGBTQ+) Pride month is currently celebrated each year in the month of June to honor the 1969 Stonewall Uprising which was a tipping point for the Gay Liberation Movement in the United States.

Join us on June 17th at 7pm EST / 4pm PT, as we welcome Sol Diaz (they/them) of Soelia, Mando Bee (they/them), Vanessa Miller (she/they) of Black Queer Magic, and Chris Habana (he/him) to our panel! Hear about the challenges and opportunities directly from queer designers and jewelers as they share their perspective and experiences in how they design, produce, and market their work. The panel will also explore barriers to entering the jewelry industry and discuss necessary changes that will foster genuine inclusivity and diversity for the LGBTQIA+ community within the jewelry industry.  

This event is open to members and non-members. Tickets are FREE! 

Zoom link will be sent via email upon registration.

About the Panelists:

Sol Diaz, Soelia


Sol Diaz is a trans/nonbinary jeweler, experimental metal smith, and founder of Soelia. They fell into the jewelry industry by chance. During their time at college, their guidance counselor recommended a jewelry class while building up credits to transfer to a fashion design school in Manhattan. On the first day at the jewelry studio while sitting at the bench, they realized it was a space for new possibilities, and were instantly on a journey to learning different facets of the jewelry industry. The focus of their work was born out of the need to break the ideologies of gender within jewelry to create a space for everyone within the gender spectrum. 

Their company Soelia centers itself around individuality and sacredness. Channeling their ancestors, they hope to manifest a vision of our future with every piece they make. The experimentation of the materials they use with their work further expands the possibilities of different forms and shapes within Indigenous futurism. Moving beyond the visual representation of sacred jewelry that's displayed in history books or museums. They’re here to move their ancestors into a new space, one that they never imagined. 
Follow Sol on Instagram at @Soelianyc

Mando Bee


Mando MANDO BEE earned their BFA from Texas State University with a focus in Metals and Jewelry in 2018. They have exhibited their work with Heidi Lowe Gallery, Ombre Gallery, JCK Las Vegas, ACC Atlanta and Baltimore, Vancouver Metal Arts Association, Australian Temp/Contemp Gallery, and Milan, Italy Jewelry Week. MANDO was included in the One for the Future emerging artist program, Placement, The EXHIBITIONIST, and Here We Are during New York City Jewelry Week. In 2018 they completed a 3 month residency at the Baltimore Jewelry Center. MANDO was also included in the American Craft Council emerging artist program HIP POP. They are featured in the Smithsonian Cooper Hewitt Learning Lab highlighting LGBTQIA+ artists, , SNAG JaMS, ARTISTAR Jewels, and Accessory Vanity Fair Magazine. MANDO is currently an MFA candidate at SUNY New Paltz.

Follow Mando on Instagram at @sparkle_filth, and visit their website at

Vanessa Miller, Black Queer Magic

VBM, LMSW (she/they) has been a self taught jeweler for 4 years. With BQMNY LLC, V offers handmade jewelry and workshop facilitations to aid in the adornment and reclamation of Black LGBTQ bodies. They began their journey with wire wrapping and ascended to lapidary, electroforming, metal smithing, and jewelry design facilitation. V was the artist in residence at The Future MPLS Artist Residency in July 2018 where they offered programming for the Black LGBTQ community. She has also been featured in Huffington Post, Glamour, Them, and Buzzfeed. Lastly, V has vended at over 40 events including Allied Media Conference and National LGBTQ Task Force's Creating Change.
Follow V on Instagram at @blackqueermagic and visit their website at

Chris Habana

CHRISHABANA takes the lines that thread goth, punk, and tribal iconography and tows them straight to the future, creating minimal yet dangerous pieces. The brand champions diversity and with daring imagery that purposefully showcases individuals with unique backgrounds, looks, and lifestyles to elevate the subcultural to mainstream visibility. This penchant for working outside of the box has attracted a large following worldwide and led to recent collaborations with designers including Prabal Gurung, Faith Connexion, Willy Chavarria, Christian Cowan and Les Hommes.
Follow CHRISHABANA on Instagram at @CHRISHABANA, Tiktok at @_CHRISHABANA_ visit their website at


Online Registration

Registration is Closed
Closed: 6/17/2021 6:45 PM

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