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Edward Levin

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Ed Levin Shaping American Design since 1950Dies February 23, 2008 BENNINGTON, VT. Edward Levin, of Cambridge, N.Y., and Cedar Key, Fla., died Feb. 23, 2008, at his home in Cedar Key, early in the morning, at age 87. Ed was born Feb. 4, 1921 in New York City and grew up in Long Beach on Long Island. He was an artist, craftsperson, jeweler, painter, sculptor, ceramist, and inventor of machines, tools and processes to enhance creativity in jewelry-making. In 1950 Ed and his wife, Ruth Levin, founded Ed Levin Jewelry.Ed studied fine arts at Columbia University, and later at Alfred University, the New School, and the Barnes Foundation. He successfully obtained conscientious objector status during World War II. In 1948 Ed lived for the year in Buenos Aires, Argentina and studied with a Florentine master jeweler. In 1949 Ed married Ruth Perlmutter, and lived on the upper west side in New York City. In 1950 with his wife, he founded Ed Levin Jewelry and made jewelry on the stove top in their New York apartment. He traveled by bus throughout New England to sell his jewelry to college students. In 1953 they moved to Shaftsbury, where Ed sold his artwork and jewelry from Ed Levin Arts Workshop, established in a building on their property. In 1964, he moved his workshop to Bennington where he opened a retail shop. In 1968, Ed married Ruth Pearl Bluestone Dale, bought a house in Cambridge, N.Y., and moved his wholesale business to Cambridge. While Ed continued to design jewelry, he also spent time in his studio at home painting, sculpting, throwing pots, and inventing tools. Ed Levin Jewelry, Inc., considered the oldest and largest hand-crafted jewelry manufacturer in the United States, is owned by the family and currently sells to hundreds of retail shops throughout the country. Ed was adamant in his beliefs and followed his own path. Life, for him, was a continuing exploration of ideas, the senses, and challenging the status quo. He actively supported peace, human rights, civil liberties, and environmental protection. Ed said, "The diversity and richness of the natural world - and all of the peoples who have inhabited it - will always inspire both art and jewelry. The connections are not necessarily direct or obvious...Nevertheless, our present is still connected to the earth forms and ancestor creations that abound and still touch us." Ed was predeceased by his second wife, Ruth Dale Levin, and his brother, Ernest Levin. He leaves his first wife, Ruth Perlmutter Levin; his three children, Rachel Levin, Flo Levin, and Alexander Levin, and two stepsons, Paul Bluestone and Donald Bluestone. FUNERAL NOTICE: Ed will be buried in Cambridge, N.Y., in the spring. Contributions in Ed's memory may be sent to: Allen Gilbert, ACLU Vermont, 137 Elm Street, Montpelier, VT 05602.]]>
Published in Bennington Banner on Mar. 3, 2008
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