Textile news

DECEMBER 2016

Book of the Month

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Martha Sielman, executive director of Studio Art Quilt Associates for more than ten years, has produced yet another important book celebrating contemporary quilt art. In 224 pages, the book beautifully illustrates 270 quilts from 18 countries. Sielman conducted in-depth interviews with 29 artists to explore their inspiration, working methods, and artistic growth.  Each featured artist interview showcases six of their quilts.  The interviews are interspersed with three galleries of full-page photographs of work by 95 additional artists. The author explains: “While geometric art focuses on lines and the basic geometric shapes, abstract works can range from these geometric forms to compositions based on realistic imagery that has been simplified in a variety of ways.  Some of the pieces in the book tell stories while others play with colors and forms.” Knowing the quality of Sielman’s earlier books, I can highly recommend this one, and am especially pleased to see the international coverage.

To order a copy:

http://www.saqa.com/book-ag

 

 

Sheila Hicks, Baoli Chords/Cordes Sauvages Pow Wow, 2014-15, 26 elements, each 98 x c.8in.; cotton, wool, silk, bamboo, synthetic fibers. Photo by Michael Brzezinski, courtesy Alison Jacques Gallery, London.

Sheila Hicks, Baoli Chords/Cordes Sauvages Pow Wow, 2014-15, 26 elements, each 98 x c.8in.; cotton, wool, silk, bamboo, synthetic fibers. Photo by Michael Brzezinski, courtesy Alison Jacques Gallery, London.

 

Sheila Hicks: Material Voices

The Textile Museum of Canada in Toronto presents the first solo show of works by Sheila Hicks in Canada. Organized by the Joslyn Art Museum, Sheila Hicks: Material Voices spans fifty years of Hicks’ prolific career as a fiber artist, capturing the breadth of her work from large-scale installations to small weavings made in response to specific places or memories. Placing older work in conversation with the new, Material Voices evokes this artist’s understanding of her own practice as a continuous, open field that allows for innovation, appropriation, and constant reinvention. I have not seen this exhibition, but in 2006 I spent a couple of hours viewing a major retrospective show of her work at the Bard Graduate Center in New York. Hicks’ ingenious manipulation of color and texture, especially in the context of personal narratives, can be captivating.

http://www.textilemuseum.ca/exhibitions/current-exhibitions/material-voices

 

 

 

Harriet Cherry Cheney, Gray Areas, 2016, 29 x 24 x 4.5 in.; bath mat, fabric, beads, handmade paper and paper beads, wood, yarn, metal hooks, wood, Danish coaster.

Harriet Cherry Cheney, Gray Areas, 2016, 29 x 24 x 4.5 in.; bath mat, fabric, beads, handmade paper and paper beads, wood, yarn, metal hooks, wood, Danish coaster.

 

Solo show by Harriet Cherry Cheney:

Toward Maximalism: Each Art a Whole in Itself

More than two dozen recent works of fiber art will comprise Cheney’s remarkable exhibition at The Donald Gallery, South Presbyterian Church, 343 Broadway in Dobbs Ferry, New York. Her methods include photography, painting, sewing, stuffing, embroidery, weaving, beading, and construction, with hunting and gathering a major aspect of her process. The artist comments, “The amazing thing is that my energy and ideas do not go on hiatus. I find it miraculous that there seems to be an endless well of things to try and things to express. There is a lot of experimentation in this show. I walk the tightrope between perfectionism and intuition.” Originally trained as a painter in the 1970s, Cheney has written music, poetry, and children’s fiction. After studying with mixed-media artist Ellen Alt, she has returned to visual art, with a prodigious amount of productivity since 2013. The exhibition opens December 18 and closes January 14.

http://www.harrietcheney.com/

 

 

 

 

Detail from Crochet Coral Reef: TOXIC SEAS.

Detail from Crochet Coral Reef: TOXIC SEAS.

Crochet Coral Reef: TOXIC SEAS

Crochet Coral Reef: TOXIC SEAS celebrates the tenth anniversary of the “Crochet Coral Reef,” an ongoing project by sisters Margaret and Christine Wertheim and their Los Angeles–based organization, the Institute For Figuring. Mixing crocheted yarn with plastic trash, the work fuses mathematics, marine biology, feminist art practices, and craft to produce large-scale coralline landscapes. With 2016 the hottest year on record, living reefs everywhere are under stress. Into these arenas of color huge areas of whiteness now intrude; bleaching events signal that corals are sick and dying. In 2005, in response to devastation of the Great Barrier Reef in their native Australia, the Wertheims began to crochet a simulation of healthy and ailing reefs. The Wertheims and their collaborators, a core group of worldwide “Crochet Reefers,” fabricate an ever-evolving artificial ecology. This installation at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York includes Toxic Reef, a new element in the Crochet Coral Reef collection that as a whole powerfully grapples with marine pollution and global warming. The exhibition runs until January 22.

http://madmuseum.org/exhibition/crochet-coral-reef-toxic-sea

 

Poster for Contemporary Quilt Art from the International Quilt Festival Collection on view at the International Study Center and Museum. Detail of Judith Larzelere’s quilt titled Veiled Color: Darks, 1986.

Poster for Contemporary Quilt Art from the International Quilt Festival Collection on view at the International Study Center and Museum. Detail of Judith Larzelere’s quilt titled Veiled Color: Darks, 1986.

Contemporary Quilt Art from the International Quilt Festival Collection

For more than three decades, Karey Bresenhan and Nancy O’Bryant Puentes have purchased studio art quilts for their Quilts, Inc. corporate collection, mostly from exhibitions at the Houston International Quilt Festival. Founded by Karey Bresenhan in 1974, the festival quickly became a destination for quilters from around the world. For the first time ever, part of this collection has been assembled into a nationally touring exhibition. As curator for the Texas Quilt Museum (founded in 2010 by Karey and Nancy), I selected the 34 quilts currently on view, which date from 1997 to 2013. The artists range from the most famous names in contemporary quilt art to emerging artists at the time of purchase whose innovative work caught the collectors’ attention. Themes and styles in this exhibition include narration, color abstraction, landscape, the cosmos and homage to antique quilts. (The touring collection contains 25 quilts; the current show at the International Quilt Study Center and Museum in Lincoln, Nebraska, includes nine additional quilts.) On view until January 14.

http://www.quiltstudy.org/exhibitions/nowshowing/internationalquiltfestival/

 

 

 

 

Jeffrey Gibson, Come Alive! (I Feel Love), 2016, 66.25 x 28 x 15 in.; acrylic felt, rawhide, wood, glass beads, stone arrowheads, steel wire, assorted beads, tin and copper jingles, artificial sinew, acrylic paint, druzy quartz crystal, steel and brass studs. Collection of the Newark Museum, 2016. Photo by Peter Mauney.

Jeffrey Gibson, Come Alive! (I Feel Love), 2016, 66.25 x 28 x 15 in.; acrylic felt, rawhide, wood, glass beads, stone arrowheads, steel wire, assorted beads, tin and copper jingles, artificial sinew, acrylic paint, druzy quartz crystal, steel and brass studs. Collection of the Newark Museum, 2016. Photo by Peter Mauney.

Arts of the Americas at the Newark Museum

In November I finally had my first opportunity to visit the Newark Museum (founded in 1909), the largest museum in New Jersey, which is undergoing an ambitious program of renovation and development. One of the impressive new permanent displays, Arts of the Americas, features some 100 objects representing Native Artists of North America, including beadwork, baskets, and other forms of fiber and textile art. Most of the works date from the 19th to the late 20th century. The exhibition also offers Latin American art spanning several centuries, with Central and South American textiles represented by fine examples from Guatemala, Peru, and Bolivia. Recently the Curator of American Art commissioned an amazing beaded figural piece from Jeffrey Gibson, who is part Cherokee and Choctaw. The Museum’s Chief Curator, Ulysses Dietz, comments on this acquisition, “The Gibson commission had two purposes: to add a dynamic and exciting new work to our newly-designed spaces, and to reaffirm the Newark Museum’s founding commitment to support the work of living American artists. In 1912 we were collecting Native American art as modern American art, and we still do today.”

http://www.newarkmuseum.org/arts-americas

Eunice Carney, Dance Boots, 20th century. Collection of the Newark Museum.

Eunice Carney, Dance Boots, 20th century. Collection of the Newark Museum.

 

 

One Response to “DECEMBER 2016”

  1. Sandra, I’m so glad I get this. It’s full of information and inspiration. Thank you.

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