Working with compact rolls of Japanese mulberry paper in a myriad of colors, artist Lisa Nilsson painstakingly creates anatomical figures and textile patterns using a centuries-old technique called quilling. In her latest artworks Jardine and Gospel, Nilsson was inspired by the patterns of an Islamic carpet and an 8th century gospel cover. The carpet piece alone was nearly 8 months in the making as she created ornate figures of flowers, stars, and other patterns to fill a 27″ by 34″ inch frame, much of which was improvised as she worked outward from the center. For Gospel she in incorporated bright gilt edged paper to mimic the actual gold used for traditional religious book covers.
Artist Kelly Rene Jelinek fabricates life-sized replicas of taxidermied animal heads using fragments of upholstery fabric. The decorative objects conjure nostalgia from Jelinek’s youth spent in rural Wisconsin where she frequently encountered taxidermy deer and game mounts as part of everyday household decor. The artist begins with the same foam mounts utilized by actual taxidermists to which she applies shreds of fabric, yarn, resin (or found) antlers, and glass marble eyes. The results are surprisingly modern sculptural objects that mimic traditional anatomical mounts. Jelinek sells many of her original works on Etsy and you can also follo her on Instagram. (via The Awesomer, Hi-Fructose)
Using scraps leftover thread from her family’s carpet factory in Buenos Aires, artist Alexandra Kehayoglou embarks on a laborious hand-tufting process to fabricate wool carpets and rugs that mimic natural textures like moss, water, trees, and pastures. The carpets balance form and function and can powerfully transform an entire room into a lush meadow dotted with pools of water and tufts of grass. Many of her works even function as part tapestry and flow from walls to floor, or work as covers for chairs or stools.
Typically focusing on obsolete or decrepit architectural structures, photographer Chris Payne's most recent project, Textiles, documents the aesthetics of the colorfully-hued American textile industry. His photographs showcase the bright runs of yarn and thread as the materials makes their way through the hyper-organized machinery, appearing digitally altered in their extreme hot pinks, vibrant reds, and electric blues.
Payne began photographing the factories and mills in America’s Northeast in 2010. The images are not just snapshots of the industry, but photographs that sometimes took months to catch. Due to the machinery’s continuous run and his inability to halt production, Payne had to wait until the perfect moment when the right color would appear, or the parts of the machinery would perfectly align. Payne also features the workers within his documentation of the diminishing domestic industry, explaining that their inclusion is proof that labor and craftsmanship is still valued in our current economy.
“Over the past five years, I have gained access to an industry that continues to thrive, albeit on a much smaller scale, and for the most part, out of public view,” said Payne. “Many mills are doing quite well, having modernized to stay competitive, while others have survived by catering to niche markets that value the ‘genuine article’ produced on the original, vintage equipment. I view my work as a celebration of American manufacturing—not a eulogy.
Trained as an architect, Payne typically shoots architectural structures using large format documentation to capture America’s industrial landscape. Past projects have included exploring America’s asylums and an uninhabited island named North Brother Island in New York City’s East River. Payne’s Asylum series will appear at Benrubi Gallery February 11, 2016 and run through March 26, 2016. (via Huffington Post)
Faig Ahmed distorts the patterns of traditional Azerbaijani rugs, dimantling their structure in order to build compositions that trick the eye by appearing to melt off the wall. By rearticulating the original design, he creates contemporary sculptural forms that look like digital glitches, patterns flatlining halfway through a tapestry or gradually morphing into a digital mosaic.
Ahmed explains that his fascination for textiles stems from their historical value, humanity utilizing fabric for nearly the entire length of human history. “Another thing that interests me is pattern,” says Ahmed. “Patterns and ornaments can be found in all cultures, sometimes similar, sometimes very different. I consider them words and phrases that can be read and translated to a language we understand.”
Ahmed lives and works in Baku, Azerbaijan and graduated from the sculpture department of Azerbaijan State Academy of Fine Art in 2004. The artist previously focused on painting, video, and installation, but now currently focuses on textile and sculpture. Ahmed recently had a solo exhibition with Italian gallery Montoro12 titled “Omnia Mutantur, Nihil Interit,” and is currently in the group exhibition “Crafted: Objects in Flux” at The Museum of Fine Arts in Boston until January 10, 2016. (via Booooooom)
Meticulously placing small, ornate materials in eye-dazzling patterns Suzan Drummen (previously) produces kaleidoscopic installations that appear like three dimensional textiles. Within these pieces Drummen likes to explore how artwork can seduce and repulse, drawing the viewer in to take a closer look at the specific details that form the larger installation.
“From a distance they appear clear and orderly, yet upon closer inspection, the eyes become disoriented by the many details and visual stimuli,” said Drummen. “That moment of being able to take it all in or not is explored time and time again.”
Although many of her pieces when zoomed out appear like textiles, a recent installation takes this to heart, appearing like two oriental rugs—one in the color scheme of pink and red and the other in greens and blues. The first piece subtly climbs up the wall, playing further into the illusionistic quality of how her crystal constructions are perceived. This optical trickery is also reflected in her works that involve bodies, ordinarily dressed participants bedazzled to match the pattern on which they sit or lay.
You can see more of the Netherlands-based artist’s work on her Facebook page here.