April 20, 2016
Liza Meza is the fiber and jewelry artist behind Beora. Each piece is made with a clear objective in mind: “jewelry for the future ancestors.” We absolutely love this description, as well as the Mayan motifs that influence Liza’s designs.
Where did your business name come from? Is there an interesting history behind it?
The name BEORA comes from the Yucatec Mayan word: “now.” It is a loose translation of the present time.
Have you always been passionate about design?
I have always admired different art forms, through different stages of my life. I think I started to become passionate about design in my early teens when I’d alter garments to best fit my awkward body type. From then on, I made a lot of different things for myself – it was fun.
When/Why did you start working in this particular craft/field?
I started making fiber jewelry in 2009 and it started as a hobby. I was in school studying art and textile design and thought it would be interesting to create pieces with my favorite mediums and leftover material; I exhausted all of my supplies the best I could. In early 2010, I started with a line of jewelry named Metal Spun, where I used mostly metal, wool, and cotton. I focused on color and function, but with time, I wanted the jewelry to be something more than these materials. So, in 2013 I revamped the brand and changed the name to BEORA.
What do you think sets your designs apart from others?
There are so many beautifully made things out in the world, each maker has a different reason for creating and I think such reasons reflect in their work. I think what sets BEORA apart is that I am very transparent as to where my inspiration comes from: Mexico. I am very proud to celebrate my Mexican roots, and love to see people appreciate their own heritage and understand and respect others. I am also committed to using recycled material wherever I can in my designs. Parallel to this idea, I offer pieces in a range of prices, and make handmade designs that are affordable for everyone.
Have you had any major failures? If so, what were some important insights gained?
I think that understanding that not everyone is going to appreciate or like your work is important. I used to equate rejection as failure, but with time realized that it is just part of market. The people who love your work will buy it and ultimately, they are the customers we are lucky to have.
What has been your proudest/favorite moment since creating your business?
My favorite moment was when artist Tanya Aguiniga purchased a few of my pieces (at a Renegade event in LA, yay!) She is an artist that I truly admire and look up to – it was a pretty awesome moment for me.
How does the city you live in influence your work?
I live in Los Angeles, born and raised. During the week I work a day job in the DTLA fashion industry. Everyday I am surrounded by different people, from different walks of life, all working towards making this particular industry successful. There is warmth, there is sadness, there is beauty and there is unfairness. Nonetheless, regardless of the good or the bad, everyone works hard and is dedicated to their job, no matter how big or small it is. The biggest influence I’ve gained from living in Los Angeles has been to always work hard towards set goals, even when they appear stagnant.
What are some inspirations for your work?
I’m mostly influenced by Mayan motifs, ethnic prints, colors and textures used in fabrics from the 60s and 70’s. I love to see old objects transformed into art, and given a new life. I am a huge fan of Ana Teresa Barbosa, Jorge Castanon and Rothko.
What are some tips or suggestions you’d like to offer to fellow makers?
Keep working towards what you love, and respect the work of others. Making things your own may seem difficult when there is already so much out there – but it is possible.