We had the good fortune of connecting with River Hendricks and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi River, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
I have always been a creative… even as a young child. When we become adults we have this notion that we are to go to college, get a 9-5, buy a house, etc. I tried these things and the work I was doing felt like I was lying to myself. I had to put on a facade – sporting business casual – clean and precise and robotic. I had a major life shift when I moved from Florida to Colorado in 2010. Before moving, I had gotten into bellydance and started stretching my ears (a form of body modification). I found myself completely enthralled in the practice and ritual of adornment found within world cultures outside the normalcy of the United States. My mind began to have visions of jewelry I could not find any where else. What started as creating pieces for myself, turned into creating for others. Friends would offer to pay for work. My skills and knowledge of techniques and materials progressed – my work organically became ‘my work’. When I moved to Colorado, I solo-hiked as often as I could. It was within those moments that I experienced an act of remembering myself. Lifetimes of becoming and evolving, now walking as this newly awakened Being. I wanted my work to be a pure translation into the act of remembrance of the Divine Self. Now, not only for myself, but for others.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
Describing my work has always been a bit tough for me. I do not like to use labels, boxing myself into some sort of definable genre. I am both ancient and future – giving life to the past and inspiring forward dreams. I do not stick to one type of material, but use anything that feels necessary for the feeling and purpose of the piece created. This can be bone, wood, antlers, teeth, textiles, found antiquities, shell, glass, leather and really anything. What gives me the most pride is knowing that the Path chose me, and I have never given up. I have had my falls, my heartaches and pains – but its those experiences that have given me the insight and wisdom into my personal life as well as my work, all across the board. Ghost River is not just jewelry. Its the remembrance of the Divine Self. It extends into not only ritual and daily adornment, but fine art, passion writing and a way of life.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
When my friends are in town I take them to my favorite places.. Adelitas for dinner, Revelry for breakfast. And we HAVE to pick up some Happy Leaf Kombucha from the local grocery store! If we were to get a drink, I would say Forest Room 5 and for a music show any of the following: Hi-Dive, Blue Bird Theater, The Ogden, Larimer Lounge or the Black Box and obviously a must hit for either music or trails – Red Rocks. Outdoors would be St. Mary’s Glacier or taking Old Fall River Road into Rocky Mountain National Park. One of the must-do’s of visiting Denver is hitting up RiNo. I am so proud of the support this city gives to creatives and artists. We have murals from some of the greatest! Grabbing a coffee from Crema and hitting the alleys is one of my absolute favorite things to do.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Rachel Brice was a defining role-model around 2008. She is an incredible American Tribal Style belly dancer from Portland, OR. It was she who captured my attention to try bellydance. I was floored at her costume work. That in itself, led me to body modifications and my love for ancient jewelry. I remember one of the first brands I found while moving into my true Self, was a company called Diablo Organics. Their designs were unlike anything I had ever seen before. Carved Mammoth Ivory, exotic woods and materials – impeccably designed and translated into wearable art. They moved me to want to create avant-garde wears right from the beginning. My parents have always supported me. They are my best friends and biggest supporters. The gifted me a lot of tools and supplies to further advance my skills. I love them so very much, they are the kindest and coolest Beings. I don’t know what I would do without them and their love. I feel pretty fortunate to have some of the most supportive friends. I cannot list everyone, but know that I cherish all of you more than words can express.
Other: Tiktok: @ghostriverart
Models: Ysa Blu and River Hendricks