|As a child Bernstein enjoyed drawing and using tools. He liked to fix things, build
things, disassemble things and put them back together again. Bernard Bernstein's first
experience in working with metals developed while he was a freshman majoring in Industrial
Arts, at City College of New York in 1953. However, he was introduced to metals earlier
while working as an assistant for a pawnbroker who conducted much of his business in
the 47th Street jewelry district of New York City. Bernstein spent time watching people in
the commercial jewelry trades doing repairs, polishing, stone setting, and engraving.
Having these experiences, he already knew a lot about jewelry when he attended the City
College of New York. The metals professor at City College was an influential figure during
Bernstein's education. That professor encouraged Bernstein to specialize in metal work.
Ludwig Wolpert also influenced Bernstein's work. Bernstein credits Wolpert for initiating
his interest in Jewish ceremonial art. Also, Hans Christensen inspired Bernstein.
Christensen reinforced his preference for the Scandinavian Modernist style in designing
hollowware. Hans Christensen, as well as Wolpert, encouraged Bernstein's involvement in
Judaica metalsmithing. Besides these specific areas of inspiration, Bernstein considers
everything an influence; from classes to workshops, conferences and seminars, reading,
teaching, exhibitions, competitions, and just being involved in the field.
Bernstein attributes his involvement in the field to his affinity for working with his
hands and the challenges of problem solving concerning design and technical applications.
As an educator Bernstein strives to provide his students with technical knowledge and
encourages them to find their path.
Bernstein has exhibited extensively and is represented in numerous collections throughout
the nation. He has received various honors and awards and is published in periodicals