March Featured Artist:
My specialty is what I call “thread sculpture.” For many years I had been creating landscape art quilts, and particularly enjoyed the technique known as “thread painting,” densely machine-stitching parts of the scene like a painter would brush on paint. Eventually I came to realize that I love thread so much, I dropped out the fabric. The artwork continues to evolve, but not my philosophy: fiber art should take advantage of its own nature, and not try to be a painting, a photograph, or an object made with traditional sculptural media.
I don't need to look far for inspiration. A good piece of advice I heard early on was to make art about what you personally know. Many of my artworks are inspired by where I live. The daily connection I have with the trees in my yard (such as the elms I planted as seeds), the neighborhood's stream, or the songbirds who visit my feeder, make it more interesting to translate experience into a tangible form. Also, some of my pieces are influenced by living in the suburbs of Washington, DC. National news is our local news. I have expressed my worldview in a series that comments on the American social and political landscape.
“The Art of the Quilt: Trends,” - Piedmont Arts, Martinsville, Virginia
Fiber National, the Workhouse Arts Center, Lorton, VA
Teapots! 11th invitational, Morgan Contemporary Glass Gallery, Pittsburgh, PA
Creative Crafts Council’s 31st Biennial Exhibition, Strathmore Mansion, North Bethesda, MD
“Dream Rooms,” part of “Small Stories: At Home in a Dollhouse,” National Building Museum, Washington, DC
“Waysides,” John Michael Kohler Arts Center, Sheboygan, WI
“Taiwan International Quilt Exhibition 2016”, National Tainan Living Arts Center, Tainan City, Taiwan
Above: Kelp Forest Teapot, 6 x 7 x 5 inches. Machine and hand stitched, cotton and metallic threads.
Right: Elm Tree Teapot, 9 x 9 x 6 inches. Machine and hand stitched, cotton threads.
Top: Furl, 14 x 19 x 7 inches . My intent with this shrine-like piece was to show a beautiful place that, when you look closer, isn’t what it seems. The scene is the view from a footbridge. Run-off from the neighborhood causes the water level to rise rapidly. The flow had seriously eroded the stream banks over several years, undercutting the trees, particularly a huge old oak whose roots dangle below the thinning soil. Two weeks after I made this piece, the tree fell.