I am so inspired by the lovely and diverse work of artist Mariska Karasz, a Hungarian artist working mostly in the late 40's and 50's. I discovered her work while searching the collection of the Museum of Art and Design. Her alphabet sampler (above) is so gorgeous- in its playful composition, many colors, and script. It makes me want do do another myself, but make it better then my last one.
I am really drawn to her more abstract embroideries and weavings, her use of color is phenomenal.
But she also created witty and playful narratives and portraits:
In Hungarian, embroidery is called Kézimunka, which, literally translated, means handwork. By and large, embroidery has become just that. Handwork . . . done with the hand, but not with the heart; worked without thought or emotion. And this should not be so, for the beauty of fabrics and fibre, their thinness or thickness, smoothness or coarseness; those endless varieties of color in harmony or dissonance deserve to be brought together with more than just the work of the hand. The relating of background to thread and stitches can become not just an exercise in manual skill, but an exciting expression in texture; an expression of mind, emotion and inner joy.... Mariska Karasz, 1950
Mariska sounds like an artist ahead of her time. I think she would be delighted to see all the creative ways artists are utilizing the hand made again.