Archive for the Art Category

Dispatches: Helena Hernmarck’s Tabula Rasa at Purdue

Posted in Art, Commission, Helena Hernmarck, Installations with tags , , , , on January 19, 2011 by arttextstyle

Helena Hernmarck's Tabula Rasa at the Yue-Kong Pao Hall of Visual and Performing Arts at Purdue's College of Liberal Arts

In 2009, Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana selected Helena Hernmarck to design and execute a tapestry for the Yue-Kong Pao Hall of Visual and Performing Arts at Purdue’s College of Liberal Arts. Lisa Lee Peterson, Professor and Graduate Director of Department of Art and Design, was instrumental in Hernmarck’s selection by the university art committee.  “Of the artists working in tapestry today,” the University’s press materials quote Jack Lenor Larson, “Helena Hernmarck stands without peer.  Her works have been selected for scores of prestigious public spaces and are seen each year by millions of viewers.  The hallmark of Ms. Hernmarck’s work is her skill in creating the optical illusion of three-dimensional designs on flat but richly textured surfaces of tapestry.”

Helena Hernmarck and Lisa Lee Peterson in Front of Tabula Rasa at Purdue University. Photo by Skif Peterson

The University determined the location of the piece — the stairwell between the first and second floors — but left the other details to Hernmarck, who addressed two needs in her conception for the piece. She wanted the designed image to collectively represent the various art forms that are studied within the building — painting, ceramic, jewelry, textile, industrial design, theater, dance and music and she wanted the design to fit within the chosen area and increase the feeling of space in the stairwell.

Designed during the summer 2009, Hernmarck settled on a theme for the design: tabula rasa, the unwritten page, also a piece of ceramic that is scraped clean of marks after each use. Hernmarck’s Tabula Rasa would represent the beginning of the creative journey, whether at inception or at the commencement of an additional phase of the creative process.  During sketching, Hernmarck often finds the road to a final design through a process of changes or “scraping away” of initial ideas in such a way that previous marks still become part of the overall design. The early phase of Tabula Rasa is referenced in the few words written on a white page woven in the tapestry.

Hernmarck achieved the feeling of space for the stairwell that she envisioned by painting and then photographing small cut-up pieces of watercolors so that they cast shadows creating an image of being in flight. This enabled her to place the smallest of the elements of Tabula Rasa closest to the plane of the image, i.e. the place with the most sense of urgency. The final design includes a play on shadows to create a visual illusion on different levels which solved the challenge of designing the lower portion of the work to catch the eye of a person walking up the staircase.

Tabula Rasa, just off-the-loom on display at the Dalamas Museum, Falun, Sweden

Alice Lund Textiles, Borlange, Sweden produced the tapestry. The main weavers were Britt-Marie Bertilsson and Ebba Bergstrom. Tabula Rasa is the twenty-first tapestry of Helena Hernmarck’s design and technique to be woven at Alice Lund Textiles since 1975. The weaving took 30 weeks from beginning to finish. During this time, Hernmarck visited the studio periodically in order to oversee the quality of the work and to participate in both the weaving and the dying process of the wool with its numerous variations, shades and values. The colors were custom dyed at Wålstedts Textile Spinning and Dying Workshop in Dala-Floda. For Tabula Rasa the workshop dyed 24 kg of wool in 41 different colors. Hernmarck prefers to use of a variety of different qualities in the spun wool, such as thin gobeline, gobelin with rya wool, and single-ply rya wool. The final work includes hundreds of different colors and textures. A video of the weaving of  Tabula Rasa can be viewed at http://browngrotta.com/Pages/hernmarck.php.

Tabula Rasa by Helena Hernmarck Detail

Hernmarck’s unique technique combines different weaving methods and patterns with which she has experimented for more than 45 years. The Hernmarck tapestry technique creates a coarse texture much like the Impressionists’ painting style of the early 1900s. A full-scale enlargement of the image in black and white is created before beginning the tapestry. The cartoon is then adhered to the back side of the tapestry and draped over an aluminum tube that presses the cartoon up against the warp from underneath. The cartoon makes it possible to follow the forms and shadows that can be seen through the warp threads. In order to observe what the weaving will look like at a distance, the artist looks through a small pair of binoculars, turned backwards.  While the tapestry is woven on the horizontal loom, only 50 cm of the tapestry can be viewed at one time.  The ongoing action and reaction in changing colors and weaving techniques creates the overall beauty of the tapestry.

Tabula Rasa was unveiled at Purdue on October 12, 2010. The final size of the tapestry is 3 meters high x 4.45 meters wide (11′ x 14.3′); the weight about 50 kg. Hernmarck has created a related companion piece, Tabula Rasa 2, which is available for sale. http://browngrotta.com/Pages/newthisweek.php
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Dispatches: Helena Hernmarck's Tabula Rasa at Purdue

Posted in Art, Commission, Helena Hernmarck, Installations with tags , , , , on January 19, 2011 by arttextstyle

Helena Hernmarck's Tabula Rasa at the Yue-Kong Pao Hall of Visual and Performing Arts at Purdue's College of Liberal Arts

In 2009, Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana selected Helena Hernmarck to design and execute a tapestry for the Yue-Kong Pao Hall of Visual and Performing Arts at Purdue’s College of Liberal Arts. Lisa Lee Peterson, Professor and Graduate Director of Department of Art and Design, was instrumental in Hernmarck’s selection by the university art committee.  “Of the artists working in tapestry today,” the University’s press materials quote Jack Lenor Larson, “Helena Hernmarck stands without peer.  Her works have been selected for scores of prestigious public spaces and are seen each year by millions of viewers.  The hallmark of Ms. Hernmarck’s work is her skill in creating the optical illusion of three-dimensional designs on flat but richly textured surfaces of tapestry.”

Helena Hernmarck and Lisa Lee Peterson in Front of Tabula Rasa at Purdue University. Photo by Skif Peterson

The University determined the location of the piece — the stairwell between the first and second floors — but left the other details to Hernmarck, who addressed two needs in her conception for the piece. She wanted the designed image to collectively represent the various art forms that are studied within the building — painting, ceramic, jewelry, textile, industrial design, theater, dance and music and she wanted the design to fit within the chosen area and increase the feeling of space in the stairwell.

Designed during the summer 2009, Hernmarck settled on a theme for the design: tabula rasa, the unwritten page, also a piece of ceramic that is scraped clean of marks after each use. Hernmarck’s Tabula Rasa would represent the beginning of the creative journey, whether at inception or at the commencement of an additional phase of the creative process.  During sketching, Hernmarck often finds the road to a final design through a process of changes or “scraping away” of initial ideas in such a way that previous marks still become part of the overall design. The early phase of Tabula Rasa is referenced in the few words written on a white page woven in the tapestry.

Hernmarck achieved the feeling of space for the stairwell that she envisioned by painting and then photographing small cut-up pieces of watercolors so that they cast shadows creating an image of being in flight. This enabled her to place the smallest of the elements of Tabula Rasa closest to the plane of the image, i.e. the place with the most sense of urgency. The final design includes a play on shadows to create a visual illusion on different levels which solved the challenge of designing the lower portion of the work to catch the eye of a person walking up the staircase.

Tabula Rasa, just off-the-loom on display at the Dalamas Museum, Falun, Sweden

Alice Lund Textiles, Borlange, Sweden produced the tapestry. The main weavers were Britt-Marie Bertilsson and Ebba Bergstrom. Tabula Rasa is the twenty-first tapestry of Helena Hernmarck’s design and technique to be woven at Alice Lund Textiles since 1975. The weaving took 30 weeks from beginning to finish. During this time, Hernmarck visited the studio periodically in order to oversee the quality of the work and to participate in both the weaving and the dying process of the wool with its numerous variations, shades and values. The colors were custom dyed at Wålstedts Textile Spinning and Dying Workshop in Dala-Floda. For Tabula Rasa the workshop dyed 24 kg of wool in 41 different colors. Hernmarck prefers to use of a variety of different qualities in the spun wool, such as thin gobeline, gobelin with rya wool, and single-ply rya wool. The final work includes hundreds of different colors and textures. A video of the weaving of  Tabula Rasa can be viewed at http://browngrotta.com/Pages/hernmarck.php.

Tabula Rasa by Helena Hernmarck Detail

Hernmarck’s unique technique combines different weaving methods and patterns with which she has experimented for more than 45 years. The Hernmarck tapestry technique creates a coarse texture much like the Impressionists’ painting style of the early 1900s. A full-scale enlargement of the image in black and white is created before beginning the tapestry. The cartoon is then adhered to the back side of the tapestry and draped over an aluminum tube that presses the cartoon up against the warp from underneath. The cartoon makes it possible to follow the forms and shadows that can be seen through the warp threads. In order to observe what the weaving will look like at a distance, the artist looks through a small pair of binoculars, turned backwards.  While the tapestry is woven on the horizontal loom, only 50 cm of the tapestry can be viewed at one time.  The ongoing action and reaction in changing colors and weaving techniques creates the overall beauty of the tapestry.

Tabula Rasa was unveiled at Purdue on October 12, 2010. The final size of the tapestry is 3 meters high x 4.45 meters wide (11′ x 14.3′); the weight about 50 kg. Hernmarck has created a related companion piece, Tabula Rasa 2, which is available for sale. http://browngrotta.com/Pages/newthisweek.php

Exhibition News: All About Anni

Posted in Art, Exhibitions, galleries with tags , , , , , on January 12, 2011 by arttextstyle

 

Anni Albers. City, 1949. Pictorial weaving. 44.5 x 67.3 cm. ©2011 The Josef and Anni Albers Foundation/Artists Rights Society New York

You’ve got just under a month to see Inspired by: The legacy of Anni Albers and Anni Albers: Design Pioneer at the Ruthin Craft Centre in Wales, which close on February 6, 2011.

Fiona Mathison, Sanctums, 2004 (photo courtesy of the artist)

Believing that aesthetics should be a consideration in every aspect of daily life, Anni Albers joined the Bauhaus as a student in 1922. Though she was initially interested in painting, Albers and other female students were encouraged to join the Weaving Workshop, which included a class taught by Paul Klee.  One of the foremost textile artists of the 20th century, Albers experimented with new materials and elevated textiles to an art form. Her work has had an influence on generations of designers and craftspeople, including the six contemporary UK artists/designers whose work is featured in Inspired by: the legacy of Anni Albers.

Wallace Sewell, Silk sampler fabric, designed by hand, woven by machine, 2010 (photo courtesy of the artists)Ptolemy Mann, Three Pieces to Dress a Wall (After Albers), 2010 (photo by Ptolemy Mann)

The exhibition was curated by Gregory Parsons. As the title suggests, each of the artists included — Dörte Behn, Christopher Farr, Ptolemy Mann, Fiona Mathison, Laura Thomas and Wallace Sewell — has been impacted by Albers, whether by her technical knowledge or her approach to design. Laura Thomas says she was, “deeply honored”  to have been invited to participate in the exhibition since, Albers is such an icon in the world of textiles and “a major source of inspiration to me over the years.”

Anni Albers: Design Pioneer, in Gallery 2 was produced in conjunction with the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation in Bethany, Connecticut. Anni and her husband, Josef, were pioneers of Modernism.This is the first exhibition in the UK to show Anni Albers’ textiles and jewellery, as well as her works on paper. Focusing on inventive and innovative aspects of her work, the exhibition identifies the threads that connect her different ways of working. The Ruthin Centre is at Park Road, Ruthin, Denbighshire, Wales.  For more information call +44 (0)1824 704774 or visit: http://www.ruthincraftcentre.org.uk/08artists.html.

Left:Anni Albers. Sample for a textile. 3.8 x 9.2 cmRight:Anni Albers. Sample for a textile. 10.8 x 12.7 cmBoth images ©2011 The Josef and Anni Albers Foundation/Artists Rights Society New York

If you are not planning to visit Wales before he exhibitions close in February, you can order the accompanying catalog,  Anni Albers: Design Pioneer from thegallery@rccentre.org.uk for £8.99 GBP (plus shipping at cost). You can also see more examples of Anni Albers’ work in her gallery the Josef & Anni Albers Foundation website: http://www.albersfoundation.org/Albers.php?inc=Galleries&i=A_1. The website also features a chronology, bibliography and photos. Or better yet, you can bring Albers’ design sense home.  Rug designer Christopher Farr has brought two Albers designs into production for the first time. Available through Design Within Reach, they are crafted from hand-spun wool, which is then hand tufted in India. One was initially conceived as a silk-and-cotton wallhanging; the other is based on a 1959 runner design. http://www.dwr.com/product/designers/a-c/anni-albers/anni-albers-rug.do?sortby=ourPicks

Dispatches: Sheila Hicks: 50 Years, Addison Gallery of American Art, Andover, Massachusetts

Posted in Addison Gallery of American art, Art, Exhibitions, Joan Simon, Museums, Sheila hicks, Susan C. Faxon, Whitney Chadwick with tags , , , , , , on November 23, 2010 by arttextstyle

It was the well worth the wait.  The first museum retrospective of Sheila Hicks‘ remarkable career has opened at the Addison Gallery and will travel to additional venues in the next few years, including the Institute of Contemporary Art of Philadelphia next March 2011 and the Mint Museum of Craft + Design, Charlotte, NC in October 2011.

Addison Gallery

The Addison is an ideal showcase for the expansive exhibition, which includes more than 100 works, journals, videos and photographs. The classic architecture of the gallery provides an ideal counterpoint for Hicks’ brilliantly colored soft sculptures, for the more formal panels of stitched medallions and linen pony tails and for the minimes, framed miniature works, from various decades that are featured throughout the exhibition. When we arrived at sundown, the building was bathed in golden light an inviting complement to La Mémoire, the brilliantly colored series of wrapped cords to the left of the entrance and Bamian, the larger jewel-toned installation that can be seen in the distance in the gallery down the corridor.

Entrance to Sheila Hicks Exhibition at the Addison Gallery. Photo by Carter Grotta

The exhibition is comprehensive, addressing the remarkable reach of Hicks’ artistic life, which has included learning sewing and embroidery as a child in Nebraska, studying painting with Josef Albers at Yale, weaving in South America on a Fulbright and site commissions for public spaces including the Ford Foundation and Georg Jensen in New York, the Target corporate headquarters in Minneapolis, the Fuji City Cultural Center in Japan and the Banco de Mexico headquarters, with architect Ricardo Legorreta. In addition, Hicks has also published a magazine, created designs for commercial production, taught, founded workshops in Mexico, Chile, and South Africa, worked in Morocco and India, pursued interior and exterior architecture, sculpture, photography, book design and writing. To unravel this extraordinary range, the exhibition focuses on five related fields of inquiry: miniature weavings and drawings, site commissions for public spaces, industrially produced textiles and workshop hand-productions, bas reliefs and sculptures, and process works made of recuperated textiles, clothing and other found objects.

View from the top of the stairs: Sheila Hicks exhibition at the Addison Gallery. Photo by Carter Grotta

Regardless of the period, the works in the exhibit are strikingly original. We found ourselves constantly checking dates as 40-year-old works appeared as fresh as those made last year. The conclusion,  after viewing Sheila Hicks; 50 Years, is inescapable: Hicks has reinvented textile tradition, and, in the process, transformed the terrain that links art, design and architecture.

The exhibition is at the Addison through February 27, 2011 Addison Gallery of Art, Philips Academy, 80 Main Street, Andover, Massachusetts, 01810; 978 749 4000; http://www.andover.edu/Museums/Addison/Exhibitions/OnViewNow/hicks/Pages/default.aspx. We hope to see it in a least one of the venues that follows.  Hicks work has always been about inhabiting space; we’d like to see this exhibition reconfigured.

The exquisitely designed and lavishly illustrated accompanying volume from Yale Press,  Sheila Hicks: 50 Years, by Joan Simon and Addison Curator, Susan C. Faxon, with an essay by Whitney Chadwick, documents the full extent of Hicks’ work, from exquisite miniature weavings to major sculptural pieces to such large-scale commissions as The Four Seasons of Fuji.  It is available from browngrotta.com.

Sneak Peek: Catalog No. 37, Advocates for Art: Polish and Czech Fiber Artists from the Anne and Jacques Baruch Collection Catalog, Essay by Christa C. Mayer Thurman

Posted in Agnieszka Ruszczynska-Szafranska, Anna Sledziewska, Anna Urbanowicz-Krowacka, Anne and Jacques Baruch, Art, Books, Central Museum of Textiles, Christa C. Mayer Thurman, Czech tapestry, Exhibitions, Hanna Czajkowska, Jan Hladik, Jolanta Owidzka, Krystyna Wojtyna-Drouet, Lilla Kulka, Luba Krejci, Magdalena Abakanowicz, Maria Laszkiewicz, polish tapestry, SOFA, The Art Institute of Chicago, Weaving, Wojciech Sadley, Zofia Butrymowicz with tags , , , , , on October 31, 2010 by arttextstyle
catalog cover

Advocates for Art: Polish and Czech Fiber Artists from the Anne and Jacques Baruch Collection

The 37th catalog produced by browngrotta arts, Advocates for Art: Polish and Czech Fiber Artists from the Anne and Jacques Baruch Collection, will be available beginning November 10, 2010.

 

PALISADES (Detail), Anna Urbanowicz-Krowacka, wool and sisal, 55" x 70", 1992

Prominent art dealers Anne and Jacques Baruch first opened the Jacques Baruch Gallery in Chicago in 1967. The Baruch’s gallery focused on contemporary art and artists from Central and Eastern Europe, which Jacques once described as “the finest work of tomorrow…not what is known…the new blood.” Many of the works presented at the gallery were by artists who began their careers under Communist occupation. The gallery’s early years coincided with worsening political conditions behind the Iron Curtain. On August 20, 1968, the Baruchs left Prague just five hours before Soviet tanks rolled into the city and brutally ended a brief period of democratic reforms.

 

LUNE DE MIEL I (Detail), Magdalena Abakanowicz, sisal and linen, 55"x 78" x 8", 1986

Making trips behind the Iron Curtain during these years was a complex and, at times, dangerous, way of making a living. Despite these difficulties, the couple managed to find a significant entourage of artists to exhibit, among them a group of innovative textile artists, who had gathered acclaim at the Lausanne Biennials of International Tapestry and other European exhibitions, but who were not well known in the US. “We were captivated by their energy, experiments and bold compositions,” Anne would write of the Polish fiber artists she and Jacques met in 1970. “Though there were…shortages of studios, materials and most necessities for daily life, all their problems did not hamper their work. Rather, it stimulated their creativity, and their use of sisal, rope, metal, horsehair and fleece as well as the traditional wool, flax and silk, revealed new artistic thought with results which were dynamic, highly personal and original.”

 

LEATHER SKETCH (Detail), Jolanta Owidzka, high warp linen, sisal, leather 27" x 45" x 4"; 70 x 110cm, 1977

These artists included Magdalena Abakanowicz of Poland (whose tapestry Lune de Miel 2 is installed at Chicago’s McCormick Place and whose sculpture installation Agora,  a group of 106 iron cast figures, is in Chicago’s Grant Park), Jolanta Banaszkiewicz (Poland), Zofia Butrymowicz (Poland), Hanna Czajkowska (Poland), Jan Hladik (Czechoslovakia), Luba Krejci (Czechoslovakia), Lilla Kulka (Poland), Maria Laszkiewicz (Poland), Jolanta Owidzka (Poland), Agnieszka Ruszczynska-Szafranska (Poland), Wojciech Sadley (Poland), Anna Sledziewska (Poland), Anna Urbanowicz-Krowacka (Poland) and Krystyna Wojtyna-Drouet (Poland). It is work by this group of historically significant artists that is featured in this catalog.

CO-BOG ZLACZYL (WHAT GOD HAS JOINED), Lilla Kulkaa wool, silk 55" X 48", 1987

Christa C. Mayer Thurman has written an introductory essay about Jacques and Anne Baruch for the catalog. Thurman, who was the Chair and Curator of the Department of Textiles at the Art Institute of Chicago from 1967 through 2009, has also written brief essays about several of the 14 artists whose works are featured in the catalog. Thurman is the author and co-author of numerous books about textiles, including, Raiment for the Lord’s Service (1975); Claire Zeisler: a Retrospective (1979); Lissy Funk: A Retrospective (1989); and Textiles: The Art Institute of Chicago (1992). For European Tapestries in the Art Institute of Chicago (2008), Thurman was the general editor, contributed to the resulting volume as an author and oversaw the collection’s conservation. Thurman and her late husband, Lawrence S. Thurman were friends of the Baruchs for many years. During Thurman’s tenure at the Art Institute several textiles from behind the Iron Curtain entered the collection either as gifts, bequests or as purchases.

PODROZ (Journey) from the Kolodia series Agnieszka Ruszczynska-Szafranska linen, sisal, wool 60" x 56", 1986

The 76-page color catalog can be ordered from browngrotta arts beginning http://browngrotta.com/Pages/c35.php November 10, 2010.

Posted in Anne and Jacques Baruch, Art, Christa C. Mayer Thurman, Exhibitions, Installations, Jane Balsgaard, Jolanta Owidzka, Kiyomi Iwata, Museums, SOFA, The Art Institute of Chicago, Zofia Butrymowicz on October 25, 2010 by arttextstyle

This November, the Art Institute of Chicago, browngrotta arts and the Sculpture, Objects and Functional Art (SOFA) exposition will offer a host of events celebrating international art textiles and fiber sculpture, including four exhibitions, a panel discussion and three artist talks.

Crystalline-Structures by Ethel Stein

Wednesday, November 3, 2010
Contemporary Fiber Art: A Selection from the Permanent Collection
The Art Institute of Chicago, Galleries 55, 57-59
through February 2011

The exhibition will explore how fiber art has developed as a contemporary art form and will feature 61 works by 52 artists including Peter Collingwood, Lissy Funk, Ethel Stein and Jolanta Owidzka as well as artists with strong local ties such as Claire Zeisler and Lenore Tawney,  who studied sculptor Alexander Archipenko in Chicago.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010
June Wayne’s Narrative Tapestries: Tidal Waves, DNA, and the Cosmos Art Institute of Chicago, Gallery 50
through February 2011

A pioneer in the revival of lithography during the early 1960s and a relentless explorer of the possibilities of paint, June Wayne has been a major figure in the Los Angeles art scene for decades. This exhibit will bring together 11 dynamic tapestries created between 1971 and 1974 based on Wayne’s innovative graphic designs Magisterial in their conception and extraordinary in their refined beauty and execution, these works showcase not only Wayne’s unique vision but the rich possibilities of uniting contemporary ideas and a centuries-old medium.

PODROZ (Journey) from the Kolodia series Agnieszka Ruszczynska-Szafranska

Thursday, November 4, 2010 Special exhibit: for Art: Polish and Czech Fiber Artists from the Anne and Jacques Baruch
Navy Pier, SOFA Chicago
Booth S 114
Opening Night Preview 7-9
through November 7, 2010

This special exhibit features 21 works by more than a dozen of the Eastern European textile artists introduced in Chicago in the 1970s by legendary dealers Anne and Jacques Baruch. The couple traveled regularly to Central and Eastern Europe to bring art back from behind the Iron Curtain. Their goal was to broaden exposure to art that Jacques Baruch once described as “the finest work of tomorrow…the new blood,” including work by  Magdalena AbakanowiczZofia Butrymowicz. The exhibition is cosponsored by the Baruch Foundation, browngrotta arts of Wilton, Connecticut and The Art Fair Company, sponsors of SOFA Chicago. SOFA opens at 11 on Friday the 5th and Saturday the 6th and at 12 on Sunday, November 7th.  It closes on the 7th at 6.p.m. For more information visit:http://www.sofaexpo.com

Thursday, November 4, 2010
Navy Pier, SOFA Chicago, Booth 120
browngrotta arts
Opening Night Preview 7-9
through November 7, 2010

browngrotta arts, which has focused on promoting fiber art for more than 22 years, will present a varied display of contemporary art textiles from Japan, Europe the US and the UK at SOFA Chicago. SOFA opens at 11 on Friday the 5th and Saturday the 6th and at 12 on Sunday, November 7th.  It closes on the 7th at 6.p.m. For more information visit:

http://browngrotta.com/index.php

Friday, November 5, 2010
Fiber Art: Unraveling Some Threads
Navy Pier, SOFA Chicago, Room 327
10:30 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Illustrated, individual presentations by fiber artist Margaret Cusack, Cindy Hickock, Kiyomi Iwata, and Donna Rosenthal.

Friday, November 5, 2010
Panel Discussion: Advocates for Art: Polish and Czech Fiber Artists from the Anne and Jacques Baruch
Navy Pier, SOFA Chicago, Room 324

2 p.m.
The panel will feature Christa C. Mayer Thurman, Emerita, the Art Institute of Chicago, chair and curator of the Department of Textiles (1967 – 2009), who founded the Textile Society of the Art Institute of Chicago and initiated the 20th Century textile collection at the Art Institute, collector Fern Grauer, now President of The Textile Society of the Art Institute and Barbara Kalwajtys, former Assistant to Anne Baruch. It will be moderated by Rhonda Brown, co-curator of browngrotta arts.

Christa Thurman and Anne Baruch

Friday, November 5, 2010
Catalog Signing: Advocates for Art: Polish and Czech Fiber Artists from the Anne and Jacques Baruch
Navy Pier, SOFA Chicago
Booth S 114
3:30 – 4:30.pm.

Christa C. Mayer Thurman, Emerita, the Art Institute of Chicago, chair and curator of the Department of Textiles (1967 – 2009), founded The Textile Society of the Art Institute of Chicago and initiated the 20th Century textile collection there. Mr. Thurman for which she wrote the introductory essay.

Circle Boat by Jane Balsgaard

Saturday, November 6, 2010
“Addicted to Nature”
Jane Balsgaard
Artist’s Talk
and Book Signing
Navy Pier
SOFA Chicago
Booth 120
2 p.m. to 3 p.m.

Danish Artist Jane Balsgaard, will speak at browngrotta arts booth about her airy boat sculptures of twigs and handmade plant paper and sign copies of the book, STAR SHIP AND SKY SEA an exhibition by Inge Lise Westman and JANE Balsgaard.

SHEATHE by Jennifer Falck Linseen

SHEATHE by Jennifer Falck Linseen

Saturday, November 6, 2010
“Fire & Emotion”  
Jennifer Falck Linssen
Artist’s Talk
Navy Pier, SOFA Chicago, Booth 120
From 3 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Colorado artist Jennifer Falck Linssen
will talk about her Fire & Emotion series of katagami-style hand-carved paper “stencils,” which reflects the form and shape of human emotions and interactions.

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Blurring the Line: Textile Art Takes Manhattan

Posted in Art, Exhibitions, galleries with tags , , , on September 24, 2010 by arttextstyle

This Fall, art involving weaving, embroidery and crochet is showing up in unexpected venues in New York, possibly answering the question, at last: Is craft art? One gallery disavows any connection: “Olek’s use of crochet has no relation to the world of craft, rather it is used as an alternative to other artistic mediums such as oil or acrylic on canvas.” the press materials assert. But we can’t help but wonder: Does the gallery protest too much??

In any event, Here’s a list of three intriguing exhibitions featuring artists who use cotton viscose, silk and recycled material, woven and crocheted, in their work as well as acrylic, ink, enamel and glass.

threading orbs
An Exhibition of Recent Tapestries and Works on Paper by Thierry W. Despont
Marlborough Gallery, Inc.
40 West 57th Street
New York, NY 10019
t. 212.541.4900 f. 212.541.4948
www.marlboroughgallery.com
September 23rd – October 23, 2010

The Marlborough Gallery mounts an exhibition of tapestries and works on paper by renowned artist, architect and designer Thierry W. Despont The show will mark the public debut of Despont’s work in tapestry. Eight monumental tapestries will be displayed. Despont is recognized for his paintings on wood panel or on copper mounted on wood panel that depict nebulas, celestial bodies and planets. These works are executed in mixed media with such materials as enamel, asphaltum, acrylic, ink, glue, epoxy resin, paper, alumichrom, and oil stick. By using contemporary Jacquard looms, Despont as translated these richly detailed, highly expressive paintings into woven tapestries that seem to glow with light.

Despont comments on this new body of work: “… I like to think of my orbs as floating in space, and tapestry, with its three-dimensional aspects, is a fantastic medium for them…. I am fascinated by our universe filled with billions of galaxies, of stars and planets, by the idea of being drawn into space and floating away. The tapestries display this poetic notion of floating with these orbs, as the light bounces off softly. … People are drawn to them…. It is an emotional force; they exert their own kind of gravity.”

In addition to his familiarity with tapestries as a child in France, Despont became engaged with the medium of tapestry — its beauty, artistic qualities and installation — through his restoration of Clayton, the Frick family mansion in Pittsburgh, and his design for the Decorative Arts Galleries of the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles, where numerous tapestries of the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries are on view. He joins a number of contemporary artists who have used the new, technologically advanced Jacquard looms to create lasting work of power and intricate visual poetry.

An illustrated catalogue featuring an interview with the artist will be available at the time of the exhibition.

“OLEK: Knitting is for Pus****”
Christopher Henry Gallery
127 Elizabeth St., (Broome)
New York, NY
t.212.244.6004
www.christopherhenrygallery.com
Through October 17, 2010

Polish-born artist, Olek creates wild, and occasionally functional, structures from hundreds of miles of crocheted, woven, and often recycled materials, forms, and spaces. For this exhibition,the ChristopherHenry Gallery serves as the “home base” for Olek’s exhibit, a multi-media sculptural environment, featuring an entire room completely covered in crochet. Viewers may also follow her threads out of the gallery using a map to discover new objects she has crocheted and intertwined throughout the neighborhoods of NOLITA and L.E.S.

“Olek’s use of crochet has no relation to the world of craft,” reads the gallery’s press materials, “rather it is used as an alternative to other artistic mediums such as oil or acrylic on canvas. Its use can be interpreted as a metaphor for the complexity and interconnectedness of the body, its systems and psychology, and, in a broader sense, it can represent humanity itself. The connections are stronger as one fabric, as opposed to separate strands, but, if you cut one, the whole thing will fall apart. It also serves as a literal extension of the body, a second skin that can be stretched and reshaped. Olek’s use of crochet is not a feminist critique – her obsessive use of the medium, often denigrated as “women’s work”, combined with Olek’s recurring camouflage motif and the impressive scale of her projects, challenges traditional notions of gender, as she aggressively re-weaves the world as she sees fit. In a new series of text based works Olek contrasts the convenience and spontaneity of “txt msgs” to her time-consuming, laborious crochet, reevaluating the notions of privacy, communication, and technology while immortalizing the intense yet fleeting sentiments of modern relationships.”

ANGELO FILOMENO:
The marquis and a bearded dominatrix with a cake in the oven

Galerie Lelong
528 W. 26th St.
New York, NY
t.212.315.0470
www.galerielelong.com
Through October 23, 2010.
In The marquis and a bearded dominatrix with a cake in the oven, Angelo Filomeno presents new embroidery paintings and sculpture that exemplify his signature technique and fascination with the macabre. Fantastical and allegorical in imagery, and intricate in technique, Filomeno’s works are deeply informed by his upbringing in Italy. Filomeno learned to embroider from his mother and began apprenticing for a tailor when he was 7; his father was a blacksmith. From a young age, Filomeno formed a keen awareness of texture, composition, detail, and craftsmanship. He also developed an interest in the darker facets of the human condition: mortality, isolation, compulsion, fragility. These stark themes have pervaded his work, juxtaposed with the use of alluring, sensuous materials such as silk, black glass, and crystals.

In his newest exhibition, Filomeno pares down the ornate approach for which he is best known and presents sparser, more concise works that evoke the artist’s common themes with minimal means. Included are two large-scale mandalas, embroidered mosaics of stitched silk and satin in varying shades of yellow. The concentric rings of geometric patterns and bright yellow hues beckon the viewer to gaze deeper and deeper in to the piece, only to be confronted by a sinister skull and hoards of cockroaches hidden in their centers. Also on view will be a triptych of detached, decomposing heads of men he deems ‘philosophers,’ a character that he has revisited throughout his career as a paradigm of the harsh aspects of mortality and reflection. “The irony,” Filomeno has said, “is that these portraits represent death, but they are still thinking about their own existence.”

Maybe we’ll see you there.