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Fiberarts - September/October 2009
September/October 2009

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Links to video profiles
Mixed-media beadwork by Kym Hepworth
Vintage fabric embroideries by Isabella Rengifo
More work by our Sampling artists
Fabric and Glass by Vanessa Yanow
Velvet and Shibori by Barbara Setsu Pickett
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September/October 2009

Sampling Showcase:

Our September/October 2009 Sampling section features artists that recycle common materials to make something new in their work. Here we share additional images by our included artists.

Christine Atkins received her MA in art therapy from Edith Cowan University—Mount Lawley, Western Australia, and her BA in psychology from Murdoch University, Perth, Western Australia. Inspired by the Australian landscape she calls home, along with her background in art therapy and psychology, Atkins’s work focuses on the “complex interaction of direct external observations and internal emotions, experiences and processes.” Using machine thread, Atkins converts natural materials, such as native Australian grasses and plants, into constructions of nature as if perceived by the mind’s eye. She hopes to uncover, through her art, the “personal yet collective” symbols and metaphors we use to connect with our surroundings.

Convoy Convoy
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Convoy (with detail), 2009; guildford grass, reclaimed timber and found objects; machine-stitched; 21" x 63" x 8". Photo: Eva Fernandez.

Tall Poppy Tall Poppy
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Tall Poppy (with detail), 2008; guildford grass, found wood; machine-stitched; 15¾" x 15¾" x 4". Photo: Eva Fernandez.

Johnston Foster received his MFA from Hunter College of The City University of New York and his BFA from Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, where he now teaches. He also attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Skowhegan, Maine. Having scavenged for discarded materials from highway medians, dumpsters, and alleyways, Foster assembles sculptures from “trash” that depict scenes of social unrest with almost comic absurdity. Thematically rich, Foster’s work derives meaning from collision (collision of old and new, lost and found, temptation and futility) to acknowledge an even grander aspiration/calamity—order from disorder.

Life Psychotic II
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Life Psychotic II, 2009; traffic cones, plastic, wood, carpet, textiles, rubber; 78" x 60" x 24". Image courtesy of Rare Gallery, New York.

Fair Game
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Fair Game, 2005; wood, fabrics, carpet, foam, rubber, plastic, rope; 12' x 23' 6" x 9' 6". Image courtesy of Rare Gallery, New York. Photo: Bill Orcutt.

A self-taught weaver from Tennessee, Judi Gaston has turned recycling into a fashion statement. Grocery bags, old photographs, spools, fortune cookie messages, Lipton tea labels, items most would throw out without thinking twice, Gaston incorporates into the designs for her recycled wearable-art collection. Transforming bottle caps into buttons, plastic newspaper sleeves into fabric, and turkey bones from Thanksgiving dinner into neckline embellishments, Gaston admits to her enthusiasm for making art that has history. Her garments accentuate the lives of those who wear them, assembled from items with lives of their own.

Kroger Calypso Kroger Calypso
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Kroger Calypso (with detail of jacket), 2008; grocery bags, vintage buttons; handwoven.

Recycle: Pattern for Life II Recycle: Pattern for Life II
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Recycle: Pattern for Life II (with detail of jacket), 2008; vintage dress patterns, thread spools, thread-spool-information tops, vintage buttons; handwoven.

Photos: David Habercom.

Jacqueline Rush Lee received her MFA and BFA in ceramics from the University of Hawaii at Manoa. She also studied under Joan Livingstone at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Drawing inspiration from materials found in everyday life, Lee has turned her attention toward used books, granting them new life as “sculptures that explore and redefine the book as a familiar object, medium, and archetypal form.” Lee uses various methods (soaking pages in water, embedding book spines into gypsum cement, and kiln processes among them) to remodel her books into a collection of geometric figures, hoping to create “evocative art forms that suggest an alternative narrative.”

Unfurled Unfurled
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Unfurled III (with detail), 2008; used book, ink; handpainted; 6" x 6½" x 6".

Flutter Flutter
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Flutter (with detail), 2008; used book, ink; handpainted; 3½" x 6" x 5".

Photos: Paul Kodam




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