About Wren Rocks


Employees play an important role in any business. Here is where we get a chance to tell you a little about ourselves. We may talk about our families, interests, and what we do in our free time. We try to bring our passion for life to you through our business and this web site. 

Wren's Autobiography

Wren as a child


Encouraged and Included

My father was a mechanical engineer and an amateur painter; my mother was a psychology major and budding sculptor. One of my earliest memories is playing under the kitchen table while my parents worked on top of it figuring out how to make a plaster waste mold of one of her pieces.

I'm also told that I was drawing recognizable pictures around the age of two. We had a fish tank, which occupied me for hours. Which was probably the point. I hadn't learned to speak, but could draw pictures of the "fee-fee" (fish). I think Mother still has the drawings.

My parents used to joke that they didn't have a pot to... put their orchid in, yet we were surrounded by a wealth of art. They had a talent for finding young artists and purchasing their works, both two and three dimensional, inexpensively. From an early age, I knew what gave art "merit."

I suppose in some way, there was no choice as to what to do when I grew up. Encouraged from the beginning and included in adult drawing groups, art became ingrained in my being.

Kindergarden Art Trauma

In kindergarten, one of my tempera paintings was selected to be shown on the Today Show. There is also a memory of art trauma too.

While painting a picture of "Rock-a-bye Baby" and creating a beautiful blue tree, the teacher came up behind me and started to yell. I didn't understand what I had done wrong. She took the blue paint away and shoved a tub of green at me saying, "Trees are not blue! Trees are green! Do it over!"

I remember crying while the green paint turned my beautiful blue into mud. To this day, I take great pleasure in painting blue trees (Purple, too!) and also take pleasure in demonstrating this color concept to my painting students. Trees really are blue.

The Die is Cast

Wren in Foundry
When I was around the age of twelve, my father started casting bronze. He probably took my younger brother and I to the shop to get us out of Mom's hair, but it what started my romance with metal. These lumps of metal that were transformed into beautiful, warm works of art fascinated me.

After graduating from high school, I spent some time casting (pun intended) around for a "real" career that would guarantee I could make a decent living. Giving up that idea after no longer being able to deny my passion, I enrolled in the Portland School of Art. (It is now know as the Maine College of Art.) I believe I was the first candidate for enrollment that had bronzes in a portfolio.

During my four-year course of study, I took over teaching sculpture classes for gifted students, ranging from grades six though twelve. I also became the Technical Assistant to the Sculpture Professor, took over the foundry, started making molds and doing bronze castings for artists all over New England.

I remained for another three years, teaching foundry in the degree program and acting as a graduate technical assistant. It was unusual to be allowed to teach in the degree program without a Masters Degree. Inevitably I caught some heat from the new instructors who had recently achieved this level.

Guess who they called when they were in technical trouble?

It should be noted, I was the only one besides the department head, who could not only do the work but, also teach the highly technical material.

Bronze Gates in Washington DC
While winding down with the Portland School, I connected with a blacksmith, Terry Steel, of Steel Forge. Through this collaboration, I designed, cast and installed bronze for gates at the National City Christian Church in Washington, DC and later its affiliate in Dallas, Texas.  At
 Terry's urging, I entered a national competition to design, construct and install a Viet Nam Veterans' Memorial in Augusta, Maine. I came in second, earned fifty dollars for six months work and will never enter another competition again!  

I made a living as a sculptor for about twenty years, developing a following and was sought out for commission work. Most of this business was reproducing antiques, making molds and producing castings for "sculptors" who didn't know the business end of a hammer. 

Sadly, a nasty foundry accident landed me in the hospital with a back injury and put me out of commission for a little over ten years. Having since recovered, I can no longer handle the rigors of foundry work.




MOM'S PLOY, OUR PLAY AND TWO BREAKS

Here is another place where I can thank my parents for a life-long passion. It was probably their own "mother of invention" to save their sanity. Mother found a silversmith to work with, so she developed an interest in gems. We were living in Maine, which is incredibly rich in gems and minerals. At the time I had three younger brothers (my sister didn't show up 'til much later). I surmise that it was a ploy to get us all out of the house and "aired." In any case, we started running all over the mountains in search of the wild amethyst, tourmaline, garnets, and many, other interesting rocks.

This interest followed me into adulthood. There was one year that was particularly challenging. In March, I slipped on the ice and broke my left leg - an ignominious end for a professional skier. When I finally healed in June, I went on an expedition to an amethyst mine that was up the side of a mountain a mile and a half in the woods. Within twenty minutes of reaching the mine, I slipped and broke my right leg. The good news is that I was with five other people - the bad news is that I had to sit and wait four hours for them to have their fun before they carried me back down to the car and take me to the hospital. During this long wait I occupied myself by scooping up garnets within reach and stuffing them in my pockets.

The following weekend found me at a different quarry, leg in cast, on crutches and attempting to manage digging tools

THE NOT SO LOST YEARS

Tony & Wren
What follows are the "lost years" where I met and married the love of my life. I was able to sculpt on a small scale for a while. My physical strength was not up to par and quite frankly; people don't buy sculpture any more... or at least not enough to support this artist. Not only that, but I had moved to Minnesota and left all of my fine art contacts and patrons behind me.

It wasn't too long before my beloved started "fast tracking" in his profession and we started moving around the country. We lived in four houses over a five-year period. Sculpture and mold making is a big and messy process at best. I knew in my heart that I couldn't disfigure a property that we would have to sell in a finite amount of time. Because of these constraints, I channelled my energy into jewelry, gems, stone beads and lore. It was clean and portable. And Wrens Rocks were born.

Creating Wren Rocks jewelry allows me to combine a love of gems and minerals, with the ingrained need to design and create something that no-one needs, but everyone wants.

The objective of our business is to provide a high quality product and reliable service for our customers. We hope you will enjoy visiting our web site and using our products as much as we enjoyed providing them for you.


Notes about Tony

Support to Wren

Tony's primary function within Wren Rocks is to manage many of the mundane, day-to-day activites of Wren Rocks to allow Wren to focus on the creative side of things. Tony does things such as managing this web page and taking photos of product for sale, Because of Tony's work, Wren is free to pursue her passions of acrostic jewelry, regular jewelry, gemology, mineralogy, sculpture, painting, and honing her psychic skills. You may contact him (and Wren) via email at info@wrenrocks.com


Tent setup
The Evolution of Wren Rocks
Tony & Wren have long held businesses. In the early 1990's they sold various items at Science Fiction Conventions in the upper mid-west, including MinniCon. They then opened a store, Symbios: Art and the Arcane, in the Saint Anthony Main complex in Minneapolis.  In the late 1990's, Wren began selling as "The Wren's Magick" at various camping gatherings around the country and on the Internet. In 2005 she changed the name to "Wren Rocks" to better describe her connection to the healing properties of stones and the direction of her jewelry. Wren Rocks downsized greatly over the past few years, however, is anticipating substancial growth in 2012 and 2013.
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