A Common Thread is an annual exhibition of Textile Center members’ work. I visited today, and here are a few of my favorite things. Click on any of the images to see them full-sized. This is Holocaust Remembrance Day, and author and Holocaust survivor Fred Amran’s yellow star made a strong impact on me.
Niagara-on-the-Lake is a beautiful town in Ontario; it reminds me of Charleston with its lovely old houses. There’s a great main street of shops plus an apothecary museum, and forts to tour – and I saw a mink in the park on Lake Ontario’s south shore two years ago, when I was looking across to Toronto. Here’s a reason to go there now, this traveling exhibition from the Royal Ontario Museum plus work by beadwork artist Samuel Thomas at the Niagara Historical Society and Museum. There are about 30 pieces of historic and contemporary Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) beadwork. The exhibit closes April 30. Read more on Niagara This Week. Even if you miss the exhibit, go anyway. It’s a thoroughly enjoyable place to visit, with lots to do and see in the area.
This exhibition at the Peranaken Museum of embroidery and beadwork is one I’d dearly like to see. Blouin Art Info wrote a post about it, with a gallery of items included, as did the Straits Times. Peranaken Chinese are Straits-born Malay, descendants of Chinese immigrants who came to the Malay archipelago. Their beadwork is distinctive, and the shoes in particular are something I would love to see. If you are in Singapore before March 26, 2017, please visit!
“Strung Together: Beads, People, and History” is open now at the University of Oregon’s Museum of Natural and Cultural History in Eugene, Oregon. It encompasses thousands of years and six continents of beads, including 50 items from the museum’s permanent collection, alongside the work of contemporary bead artists including Suzanne Golden. There are also interactive activities. The exhibit is open at until February 5, 2017.
From the website, “Featuring a diverse range of working artists from across America, “State of the Art” offers a snapshot of contemporary art that examines the ways in which people innovate with materials old and new to engage deeply with issues relevant to our times. Drawing from every region of the United States, this one-of-a-kind exhibition brings together more than 130 artworks ranging from works on canvas and paper, to photography and video, to installation art, and more.”
Following are a few of the works that particularly caught my eye. (Click on the smaller photos to see at full size.)
Joel S. Allen, Hooked on Svelte, was in the first room.
Laurel Roth Hope, Biodiversity Suits for Urban Pigeons. I like the description on the accompanying didactic text, that Hope considers herself “an artist who wishes she was a scientist,” and that her work bridges these two things.
Nathalie Miebach’s work is fascinating – each of these is derived from technical data collected during a specific weather event or period of time. Different types and colors of reeds represent different data: wind speed, temperature, tide level, etc. Read more about her work in American Craft.
Gina Phillips starts these works with a painting, and adds fabric and textiles in layers.
Pam Longobardi sources some of her materials from the plastic garbage patches in our ocean, prompting awareness of the destructive environmental effects of mass consumption.
Watie White uses traditional printmaking to create urban landscapes.
I have enjoyed Sonya Clark’s work for years, most recently at an exhibition at the Minnesota Museum of American Art, and a lecture at Mia. This piece is Albers Interaction, referring to Josef Albers and his Homage to the Square series, with materials that reference black hair. Composed of thread-wrapped combs.
Elizabeth Alexander makes these of hand-cut bone china.
This is cut paper by David Adey, made from a three-dimensional scan of his body.
A lovely visit to a lovely museum.
Recently closed in the Minnesota Museum of American Art’s Project Space is “Material Mythologies.” From the Museum’s description: “Material Mythologies brings together textiles, beading, metal, ceramic, and glass by five artists from around the country, all of whom are working at the edge of contemporary craft and sculpture…With their innovative use of functional and non-functional forms, some of which include thousands and thousands of intricately assembled pieces, these artists and their works decode some of the entrenched assumptions about craft as they relate to gender, labor, history, and what is considered fine art.”
Following are galleries of the artists included. First, Teri Greeves:
Mary Giles, whose work I’ve written about before, and who recently gave a talk to fellow American Craft Council staffers and volunteers:
A wonderful exhibit. I can’t wait until the MMAA is fully open!
The Castellani Art Museum of Niagara University recently opened “Made of Thunder, Made of Glass II” on its campus north of Niagara Falls, New York. The exhibit “explores the intricate details and intimate meanings of Haudenosaunee, Wabanaki, and Chippewa beadwork through exquisite historic works and elaborate contemporary creations.”
There are more than 200 historic pieces, as well as beaded portraiture by contemporary artist Gerry Biron, and other contemporary artists. To see more of the work, there is an active Facebook page for the exhibition. I was in the area last summer. Shoot!