Philanthropy as an Artform
By L. Angel Morales
Social responsibility, social justice, and philanthropy are causes that have been forever branded in the back of our minds, and for good reason. It may sound cliché, but it is only through humanity’s selfless devotion that the world becomes a better place for the human race. These days, there are many companies that embrace these causes, but Joan Hornig Jewelry is one that does it seamlessly. In a very innovative way, she has designed a business plan that works flawlessly with philanthropy.
Hornig attended Harvard College, where she received a degree in art history. It was there that her philanthropic roots started to sprout. Aware of the importance of her education, Hornig later began teaching and fundraising at Harvard. She obtained her MBA from Columbia University, where she gained knowledge that would be implemented in her business. After working on Wall Street for nearly 20 years, she decided to follow a more personal dream of making jewelry while giving back to communities in need around the world. She accomplished her goal when the New York retailer Bergdorf Goodman decided to sell the Joan Hornig Jewelry collection at its store. Currently, her designs can be purchased at www.joanhornig.com.
Hornig’s Philanthropy is Beautiful campaign, which donates 100 percent of its proceeds to the customer’s charity of choice, allows her consumer to not only purchase a beautiful piece of jewelry but also choose where the donations will go. With a growing list of participants, the company has been able to donate millions of dollars to global organizations, including those supporting cancer research and human rights.
Hornig’s jewelry is a true form of artistic expression. A mixture of multicultural exposure, a multifaceted life, and profound historical knowledge is reflected in her craft. Her line is organic and modern and includes necklaces, rings, bracelets and cuffs, cufflinks, and other items such as stationery and sundries. Hornig uses a variety of materials in her designs, including gold, silver, brass, and onyx. Her most famous looks are ones that have been inspired by nature, including the popular Petal necklaces. Hornig has also created items for specific charities, including the Bark for a Cause necklace benefiting the ASPCA and the Wave of Help necklace, designed in response to the tsunami in Japan.
It is the beauty of Hornig’s craft that entices many celebrities to adopt her pieces. Many of her creations have been worm to red carpet events and have been written about in noted publications, including O Magazine and The New York Times. Although Hornig’s creations are costly, she has recently been designing more affordable pieces that still work to support a charity.