Monday, June 30, 2014

A Selfie in Tapestry?

Line #1
By Nicki Bair 2014

This is my entry to ATA's Unjuried Small Format Tapestry Exhibit for 2014 which will hang from July 8th to August 8th at the University of Rhode Island Feinstein Providence Campus Gallery. There is an opening reception July 17, 2014 5:00 – 9:00pm. If you are in Providence Rhode Island during the time of the exhibit do check it out. It has always been a wonderful exhibit in the past with a plethora of small tapestries. It is rare to see so many tapestries all in one place.

With what I can only assume is a tongue in cheek title of "Untitled/Unjuried" for the overall exhibit, our group submission was titled "What's My Line?" Our tapestry group created ten four by ten inch tapestries with the exciting titles of Line #1, Line #2 etc. up to Line #10.  The titles were assigned alphabetically hence my title Line #1. Our challenge for this exhibit was to design a piece with two sections; one very light and one very dark. The general concept was to take a 4 by 10 piece of dark paper and with one cut with a pair of scissors; one line, divide the paper into two pieces. Place one of the pieces of the dark paper on light paper and that was it - - the design for the tapestry.

I attended a tapestry workshop where we focused on how to weave lines in tapestries.  At that workshop I decided to practice on the design I had created with that quick swipe of my scissors.  One of the weavers, who was also a surgeon, corrected  'errors' in my design as to nipple placement and slope.  She also suggested making it larger.   It made for quite a humorous workshop and I learned a lot about anatomy. So with that feedback in mind, I adjusted my line and wove the final piece in silk dyed with just a hint of pink and a fuzzy novelty black appropriate for a sweater. 

The result makes me smile.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Seaside Spectrum at Convergence 2014

I just mailed off our Seaside Spectrum; where color meets fiber to the east coast for its showing in the A Lively Experiment-All Media 2014 Exhibit at Convergence in Providence Rhode Island.   Showing July 16-19th at the Phode Island Convention Center in Providence.

Seaside Spectrum- where color meets fiber is a collaborative piece created by the Seaside Weavers, an ecclectic group of textile artists on the Westside of LA.  We all competed by creating pieces in various colors to part of the final submission. Seaside’s entry is a collaborative entry conceived by me and Merna Strauch consisting of twelve pieces in the twelve colors of the color wheel done in a variety of fiber techniques.  Each 4 by 10” piece is framed in a silver frame. 

The Selection Process
The process started in May of 2013 with construction of the Seaside color wheel made of bits of paper from various magazines and paint chips. Each member was then challenged to create a piece in some fiber technique in the color to which they were assigned. Many members did multiple pieces. In the end there were over 45 pieces from which to select the twelve for our Seaside Spectrum entry. 

Then the fun really began.  All Seaside members got together and in true Seaside fashion - collaboratively chose the best twelve pieces representing its color wheel. In the end, there were many artistically beautiful and technically perfect pieces not chosen because they simply did not get along with their neighbors in the color wheel.   Like Chagall said, All colors are the friends of their neighbors and the lovers of their opposites.  The selected twelve pieces for our entry were best friends with their neighbors.

I created four pieces; 2 yellow and 2 green.  Only one got selected to be part of the Seaside Spectrum; look for the green one below; green pencils wrapped with green silk along with a green pencil sharpener.  One of the "rejects" was picked up by Small Expressions so all was not lost!

Here’s a list of the winners by color along with their fiber technique.

Red                   Barbara Jones              Silk paper fusion
Red/Orange      Maureen Gilchrist         Crackle weave
Orange             Barbara Jones              Wet felted wool
Yellow/Orange  Marj Meadows              Bargello needlepoint
Yellow               Judi Freed                    Woven with crocheted embellishments
Yellow/Green    Helene Korn                 Tapestry with feather
Green               Nicki Bair                      Silk yarn wrapping
Blue/Green       Margie Fine                  Tapestry with mixed novelty yarns
Blue                  Carolyn Sell                  Ply split braiding single course oblique twining
Blue/Violet:       Karen Leckart               Woven twill checks
Violet                Debbie Shoenberger    Tapestry- eccentric weave in handspun yarn
Red/Violet:        Karen Leckart              Embellished plain weave

The Final 12

When you are at Convergence make sure to check out the A Lively Experiment exhibit and see the Seaside Spectrum: where color meets fiber.  It will be fun to see how the curators display these twelve pieces.  So many different ways

Monday, June 02, 2014

My Beetle in Small Expressions!

I just mailed my Ladybug tapestry to the Fuller Craft Museum in Brockton Ma.  It will be exhibited along with other small pieces in Small Expressions 2014 from July 15th through October 4, 2014.   It is always an honor to have a piece in this biennial exhibit.

This was one of two small pieces I completed during my 'green phase' last year. One of my art groups had a collaborative project where we were assigned colors and had to create a variety of fiber pieces in those colors to fit in a silver 4" by 10" frame.   I was assigned green and yellow.  This ladybug is one of my green pieces.  The other will be exhibited in A Lively Experiment exhibit at Convergence....but more on that at a later time.

I got the idea for this tapestry from a photo my husband took at the UCLA Botanical Gardens.   Of course, in his photo the ladybugs were red and much smaller but with a touch of Photoshop I was able to create a cartoon to my liking in about thirty minutes.  The yarn is all 'stash yarn' and all dyed by me at some point in my life. I was surprised by the amount of green silk I had in my boxes of yarn,    I wove with singles at a 14 e.p.i.  

For fun and to accentuate the realism, I stuffed the tapestry a bit behind the beetle and behind a few of the leaves for a slight three dimensional effect.

This is one of my favorite pieces.