I found this image of a beautiful found-object jewelry piece by Richard Salley on vintaj.com, a jewelry website/magazine/blog. The wrote that Richard said,
"...the thing about found object art is that the pieces themselves don’t have much value. The value comes from the creative process of putting those things together in some artful way"
Yes! He says he doesn't consider himself a jeweler, more like someone who can make wearable art, since he doesn't use any materials that have intrinsic value. I love that. That's really why I love found object art. These materials are lowly pieces of trash (more often than not), but they can be raised to a higher level by the creative process of assemblage and intention. It sometimes feels like a parallel process to art therapy work - that someone's challenges, set-backs, sadness, could be something they would want to throw away, but it can be transformed into something beautiful.
(Read Richard Salley's blog!)