Contemporary fiber art is not your grandmother’s crocheted afghan.
Excellence in Fibers, an exhibition of selected works drawn from the second annual international juried print exhibition published by Fiber Art Now magazine, presents some of the most exciting and innovative work being done today in the world of contemporary fiber art.
The show, up at New Bedford Art Museum / ArtWorks! from Jan. 25 to March 19, is FAN’s first venture into presenting their print exhibition in a real-world venue.
Fiber Art Now received submissions from artists around the world in response to the call for entries. The prestigious panel of jurors were: Emily Zilber, Curator, MFA Boston; Gerhardt Knodel and Norma Minkowitz, both internationally recognized fiber artists and icons in the field of fiber; and Melissa Leventon, principal of Curatrix Group Museum Consultants and a former curator at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.
Of the over 50 works in the print exhibition, 31 were selected for the show at NBAM/AW.
Excellence in Fibers runs the gamut from established artists to newcomers; from traditional age-old basket weaving techniques to digital manipulation and printing; from familiar sewing and quilt making to laser cutting techniques.
Within the broad category of fiber, the show includes weaving, sewing, applique, embroidery, basket making, sculpture, crochet, felting, screen printing, joomchi and knotting.
As part of the print exhibition, special awards were given and several of those are in this show.
Nicole Benner’s Comfort/Confine is a large work of crocheted copper wire that becomes a performance piece when donned by a wearer. Named as the Paul J. Smith Award for Excellence in Fiber winner, Benner’s work is a thought-provoking piece on the effects of chronic pain.
“In Comfort/Confine, I utilize the copper yarn as a reference to the nervous system: an aspect of my own chronic pain that can be debilitating. Here the body has defined mobility, only capable of reaching where the textile allows,” the artist stated in the exhibition issue of Fiber Art Now. Benner hails from Marshall, Missouri.
Joel Allen’s hand-wrapped, tied and knotted work Hooked on Svelte was named the winner in the installation category. A series of large mixed media pendants are suspended from the ceiling creating a fun, textured and colorful display 12 feet long by this Steamboat Springs, Colorado, artist.
At the other end of the size spectrum, at only 17 inches in height, is Massachusetts artist Lois Russel’s NZ, a little jewel of twined waxed linen thread – and winner in the Vessel Forms/Basketry category.
The Nigerian Riot Girl, by artist Jacky M. Puzey of the United Kingdom, is one of the international submissions. Employing a tour de force of fiber techniques, this winner of the Wearables Award is an intricate couture dress designed and constructed by the artist that dazzles with a complex mix of materials.
In the Wall/Floor Works category artist Heather Ujiie of Langhorne, Pennsylvania was named the winner for her textile mural consisting of five panels that together are 126 inches by 250 inches. Battle of the Sea Monsters was originally hand drawn in markers, pen and ink, then scanned at high resolution, digitally manipulated and printed on canvas. Vibrantly colored, the work is an intense mass of men, women and other creatures waging a ferocious battle on a lemon colored sea.
The complete list of artists also includes David Bacharach, Pat Hickman, Pat Burns-Wendland, Pat Busby, Anna Carlson, Deborah Corsini, Ania Gilmore, Anna Kristina Goransson, Meredith Grimsley, Henry Hallett, Patricia Kennedy-Zafred, Jean Koon, Mariko Kusumoto, Jeannet Leendertse, Dorothy McGuinness, Alicia Merrett, Elizabeth Odiorne, Kathryn Rousso, Chloe Sachs, Diane Savona, Deloss Webber and Wendy Weiss.
The opening reception for Excellence in Fibers will be held Sunday Jan. 29 from 2 to 5 p.m. Marcia Young, editor-in-chief of Fiber Art Now, along with a number of the artists, will be on hand. Workshops by well-known fiber artists Elin Noble and Jeanne Flanagan will be offered in New Bedford the preceding day.
Registrations and special hotel discounts are available through Fiber Art Now.
For further information contact the Museum at 508.961.3072 or visit www.NewBedfordArt.org.
New Bedford Art Museum/ArtWorks! is located at 608 Pleasant Street, New Bedford. Gallery hours are Wednesday through Sunday noon to 5 p.m.; open every Thursday until 9 p.m.
Original Story Here: