Thursday, March 31, 2011

i want to see more...

Artist Rachel Brummer recently emailed me with images of her most recent show at the Grove/Thurston Gallery in Seattle and oh how do I wish I could see it in person. It looks very interesting and the work has a subtle nature that makes me want to experience it up close and personal.

these are on fiber.

I feel like these works do not fully translate through the photograph as it just seems like the texture and subtle palette is somewhat lost. But even still it is obviously gorgeous! So we can imagine what it would be like if we were lucky enough to check it out. (so Seattle people please do!)

Oh, I want detail images -these look amazing but I feel like I am just being teased by this photo.

A description of her new exhibit...

Rachel's new works translate human experience into visual form, including dyed and embroidered fabric mounted under glass influenced by Galileo's drawings of sunspots; text embroidered on recycled waxed collars based on her work with Pat Graney's 'Keeping the Faith' prison project; and photographic still lives on fabric composed of unusual keepsakes contributed by a sampling of Seattle residents.

The dyed linens are gorgeous.

And the photographic works on fiber are quite interesting.

She has a number of other gorgeous works, often quilts that combine her photographic technique with her stitchery-

so go check out her website, it is a little crazy to navigate through but worth it to find some of the treasures that she has created. A number of her works have extensive statements and gorgeous installations.

There is nothing like hearing the laughter of your child...Pure Joy.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011


I wish that I had made it to this exhibit's opening but am totally hoping to make it over and see it. Plus I know some of the fabulous artists included so even more reason to head over.

March 26 – May 6, 2011


Group Show, curated by Ward Mintz

Emily Barletta, Sandy Benjamin-Hannibal
Denise Burge Elisa D’Arrigo
Linnea Glatt Janet Henry
Cyrilla Mozenter Jessica Rankin
Laura Splan, Anna Von Mertens

The exhibition focuses on work where sewing is integral to the making and looking experience. Art/Sewn attempts to blur the distinction between art and craft, so relevant to today’s art world when so-called fine art has adopted craft forms and techniques and craft artists are making non-functional work. What the work shares is sewing—sewing on woven fabric, on paper, felt and skins. Sewing as an artistic means, as expression, as feminist statement.


knees deep in the final selection for Play... and oh how things are tough, crazy, and grand.
So much good work but as always working to make the show have an interesting conversation, fit the space, express my vision....

I plan on heading to the space tomorrow to finalize things while looking and measuring and such.
But it is going to be good, good, good.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011


the amazing chandelier in the common space.

The critique last night was so fun. It was such a privilege to go into such kind and talented artists spaces and get them to share their work with me. They are all at such exciting and wonderful precipices in their working process as artists which is such a wonderful moment for them.

a studio shot.

I actually ended up critiquing each of the artists, aka all 6.

I truly enjoyed leading the critiques and only wish I had remembered to take some pictures but...
all 6 artists will participate in an exhibit in July so you can all see the work they have done then.

Now I have to get back to work!

Red, white and wonderful

I am just going to let my photographs speak for themselves but ... if you are in or anywhere near NYC you must make your way to this. The exhibit is only open until tomorrow but it is free, amazing, beautiful, and a once in a lifetime experience of quilts.

the examples of hand quilting are astounding in their skill and beauty...

There are a number of incredible examples of hand embroidery...

and then some more simple, austere, and incredibly beautiful works...

The role of community and the experience of many hands coming together through quilting is honored and celebrated.

The installation was in short - genius. It showcased the collection as relevant and contemporary but also allowed you to individually see and appreciate every single quilt.

And though there are over 650 quilts on view because of the cohesion of color and installation you are able to walk through and not feel overwhelmed or stimulated- but rather calm and full of abundance.

You can get more details on the exhibit from my Friday post here.

Monday, March 28, 2011

letters to you.

I finished my first letters to you piece and am super excited about the project. I think it will be a perfect compliment to the red thread images and I am so loving making them. I have been yearning for a text based project that excited me and this one does, finally. Best of all it is a perfect project for me to be working on at home on the days I cannot go into the studio and carry around for the subway rides and such.

It feels so good to be excited about my work again.

so today I will start a second one.

critique night.

Tonight I will be leading the critique for the Textile Arts Center Residency. I am delighted to be invited to do this as I love, love, love critique in general and am just honored to be invited into their beautiful studios and meet all of them.

I am a little nervous as 2 of the 3 artist being critiqued tend to focus a little more on the actual creation of textiles and even clothing which are not areas of my expertise- but as an artist very interested in the conceptual aspect of creation maybe it will create a good discussion for them.

Jill Magi I have mentioned here before as she was a student of mine awhile back.

and then we will be looking at the work of Tali Weinberg who weaves incredibly gorgeous scarves and such, but as an artist she is incredibly interested in the politics of labor. Often approaching this via participatory installation.

She states: practice of making is informed by my work in human rights and fair trade advocacy, community organizing, and grassroots development. Through weaving and stitching, I explore how labor rights, community, ecology, and meaning shape and are shaped by the craft of turning fibers into textiles. I find beauty and liberation in the ability to take something apart in order to create something new and the knowledge that amidst constraint we have an abundance of choice in how we produce meaning, objects, and social lives. I find further inspiration in the women labor movement’s call for “bread and roses:” life should be beautiful as well as just. So I use my hands to make cloth that touches our skin and inhabits our lives: to turn the results of my own consumption away from excess and back into objects I hope are of comfort, beauty, and meaning for others.

and then there is the incredible knit wear by Julia Ramsey. She seriously makes some of the most exquisite wedding dresses ever! I want to get re-married all over again and wear a dress by her. (to the same wonderful man though.)

On her website she describea her practice:

my personal aesthetic tends to reflect varying combinations of strength and femininity. The structures that make up my fabrics create strong foundations for otherwise extremely feminine, body conscious garments. Ultimately, the body guides me. Initially, I am inspired by all “things” tangible experienced by way of the senses. More slowly, I am working to embrace the conceptual…

So as you can see I am in for a wonderful night of discussion, critique, community and inspiration.

Friday, March 25, 2011

heading into...

Do you ever feel like your to do list is WAY too long. I feel like just keeping up on my emails, inquiries, and applications is a full time job. ACK.
But today me and T will be heading into the city to see the quilt show I wrote about, another show that a friend recommended which has a Sheila Hicks piece in it , and then we will be swinging by here as it closes this weekend.

Wooh, I am already exhausted.
But it will be worth it to see so much good stuff.

I am feeling totally refreshed and revived with my own work so... that makes me happy to see other work too.

Thread Reviews.

Check out my article on the amazing quilt exhibit in NYC this weekend. I will be heading there this afternoon.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Love letters.

Normally this would be a long nice studio day for me but... all of a sudden it is totally back to winter her in Brooklyn and the studio heat has been on the fritz. So sadly I am at home.
But I feel like my week has been extremely constructive...

and I have this new project to work on here at home-

I have been really struggling with where to take my text based work. I LOVE working with text but have felt a loss of what to say for the more diaristic text and therefore have not really been moving forward much. But in thinking about the red work and the show in August I wanted to have an element of text in the show and also a visual break from the red thread so I ended up coming up with the idea of "re-creating" some of the letters I have written C. He is sweet enough to save them and I am a sap enough to write them frequently.
I am actually very excited about the project as it is still work that is in my words but in a different way, some of the letters are short and silly, some are serious and VERY loving, and some are written after fights or during fights. So it will show the breathe of love in a nice way. All the pieces will be variations of white on white which I think will go nicely with all the red on red work.

What do you think? Does it sound interesting?

adventure's in the wild

My studio mate forwarded the work of Hannah Haworth over to me and I love the fun playful, nature of her work. She creates to scale knitted animal sculptures.

Each piece seems to be part of a much larger story. This is her story for the above work The Hunt:

One day she did not return from her fishing and so she was searched for, he reached her spot but it was deserted. And so he began looking for her tracks – they led directly away into the vast interior. It began to get dark as he ventured inland more and more. As night fell, he became sure that her feet were bare. They became smaller and smaller the further he tracked her. As he continued, one of her feet became wolf while the other remained human. As she was like that, he turned back.

There is not too much info about her process and or her conceptual story in her website but from the little I gather she reminds me quite a bit of Kimberely Hart and the idea of making work out of a fictional alter ego's adventure's in the wild.

See more of her work here.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

larger then life portraits

I was recently contacted by the embroidery artist Harriet Maxwell - In essence she contacted me to simply share her work with me and I am so happy she did.

As an artist who studied Textiles at Goldsmiths University, London where she learned to use the Irish embroidery machine she makes incredibly sophisticated works of art. Her work excels in technique and is truly an homage to the craft of embroidery.

The portraits she creates are quite large, about 1 metre squared.

When asked about her work and choice of subject she wrote:

I crop the faces as I am interested in the surface, texture and colours of the skin rather than gender or age. I select any face that I find interesting or unique.

I love how the faces are cropped and therefore not about the individual themselves but about the planes and beauty of a face or about the emotion and content in their expression and... as you know I love me a little negative space.

Her work is gorgeous and I can only imagine how much more lovely in person, especially considering the scale. So now I just want to see more, more, more.

Thanks Harriet for sharing your work with me and everyone here at the bird.
See more of her work and a few different series here.