Jeweler Jose Balli of southern Louisiana worked in a metal fabrication shop just out of high school, shaping and welding custom equipment for the oil industry. One day, while waiting for a machine to cut through an enormous pipe, he killed time by carving a tiny alligator from a scrap of soapstone. Coworkers encouraged him to take up art seriously and, thus, began Balli's 20-year career creating Bayou State designs with a naturalistic appeal. Using an ancient method, Balli carves his intricate pieces into wax that is then converted into metal, using gold and sterling silver. Since the wax mold pattern is destroyed by the transfer, it is known as the "lost wax" method.
Jose Balli celebrates our unique corner of the world through jewelry designs symbolizing the spirit, culture, and heritage of the city of New Orleans, the state of Louisiana, and the Gulf Coast region. Homegrown, heartfelt, and handcrafted, Balli’s work has roots deeply planted in the land where the artist has lived since childhood, echoing his deep, abiding love for the area’s natural beauty, and... especially for its people. Their faith, resolve, and joy in everyday living have served as a constant source of inspiration. Through his art, Jose shares this inspiration with his customers, knowing there exists common, yet powerful bonds – of shared experience, sense of place, and strength of spirit – which bring us closer together. Whether received as a gift or purchased personally, each piece of Jose Balli jewelry is created to serve as a lasting reminder of those bonds, and ultimately, as a keepsake cherished for the special memories – of places, people, and moments – recalled.
Hours of Operation:
Mon-Sat 10am-6pm; Closed Sun