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Art

Enormous Panels of Patchworked Fabric Give Colorful Temporary Makeovers to Public Buildings

September 13, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Textile artist Amanda Browder collaborates with the communities she’s working in to built site-specific architectural interventions. Using hundreds of yards of donated fabric with bright colors and patterns, Browder and her volunteer teams stitch together enormous panels that resemble crazy quilts. The panels wrap around bell towers, sheath elevated walkways, and drape from gables and eaves to give passersby a new experience of familiar buildings. In a statement on her website, Browder describes her work:

A state of betweenness – ‘twixt soft sculpture /’tween orchestrated public object installation with a studio affinity for abstraction and minimalism”. I am in love with the transformative nature of materials, and how the combination of the familiar creates abstract relationships about place. This relational objectivity generates an open-ended narrative, ambiguous situations defined by the choice of materials and work ethic. Central to the psychedelic experience, I am drawn to reinventing Pop-Art colors by exploring shifts in scale and sculptural perceptions.

The Montana-born artist received a B.A. in studio arts as well as two master’s degrees in sculpture and installation art. Browder is now based in Brooklyn and frequently travels to create new work. She was recently awarded an opportunity with the prestigious ArtPrize organization in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The multi-part work, titled Kaleidoscopic, is currently on view at locations around Grand Rapids. Keep up with Browder’s projects on Instagram, and watch the video below for a time-lapse of a previous installation in Las Vegas and an interview with the artist.

Photo: Bryan Esler

Photo: Bryan Esler

 

 



Art

Traditional Textiles are Unraveled and Re-Woven in Installations by Aiko Tezuka

September 4, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Berlin-based Japanese artist Aiko Tezuka carefully unravels and re-weaves elaborate textiles to form new shapes and patterns. In some works, the separated threads hang from the bottom edge of an intact textile in perfectly parallel lines; others feature threads course down in waterfall-like sheaths, reconnecting as they crash into the floor. In still others, the loose threads come together to form images and words hovering on sheer substrates. Tezuka closely studies the cultural and economic histories interwoven in different Eastern and Western textile traditions, examining the greater symbolism embedded in each decorative element.

“My essential interest has been what makes up the surface of the object; through which processes was the surface produced; how could I peel off the surface; what things could I see behind the surface; and how could I embody these things behind the surface into my work,” Tezuka shares in an artist statement. “Although we are completely surrounded by surfaces, we cannot physically enter things in even one millimeter under the surface. Every time we peel a surface, a new surface will appear immediately, like an infinite loop. How does one perceive these infinite surfaces, or loosen the surfaces that seem to be firmly interwoven?”

She has exhibited widely and her solo show “Dear Oblivion” at Michael Janssen gallery, runs from September 14 to November 16, 2019 in Berlin. Tezuka’s work is also on view September 7 – 28, 2019 at MA2 gallery in Tokyo. See more from the artist on Instagram. (via The Jealous Curator)

 

 



Art

Peaceful Portraits Shaped from Bunched and Layered Netting by Benjamin Shine

August 5, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

For his “flow” series, artist and designer Benjamin Shine crafts portraits of serene faces using lightweight tulle fabric. The fine netted material allows for dramatic differences in opacity depending on how densely it is is bunched or layered. In his artist statement, Shine explains that his work “centers on ideas of energy, impermanence and the relationship between the spiritual and the superficial.” With his most recent sculpture, “Quietude”, Shine scaled up his signature portraits and built an outdoor sculpture that measures over eight feet tall. The fuchsia-toned sculpture was made an 80 by 20 foot piece of recycled high density polyethylene shaped around a steel frame, and its color shifts as natural light changes throughout the day. Take a peek inside Shine’s studio in the video interview below, and see more of his work on Instagram.

 

 



Design

Hypnotic New Garments by Iris van Herpen Blur the Boundaries of Art, Science, and Fashion

July 9, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Like many of her haute couture peers, fashion designer Iris van Herpen (previously) selects a theme that inspires and unites the designs in each of her collections. Van Herpen, who has interdisciplinary interests in fine art and science, is particularly known for her wide-reaching collaborations. For her latest body of work, titled ‘Hypnosis,’ the Dutch designer partnered with Anthony Howe (previously), an American sculptor who specializes in large-scale kinetic works.

The resulting collection is centered around Howe’s Omniverse sculpture. With rotating circles of varying sizes spiraling out from a central arc, Omniverse “explores our relationship with nature and intertwines with infinite expansion and contraction, expressing a universal life cycle,” according to a statement on van Herpen’s website. The designer used feathers, silk, aluminum, stainless steel, organza, ball bearings, and satin in labor-intensive processes to form the ethereal dresses worn by runway models who passed through and around Howe’e sculpture.

“The ‘Hypnosis’ collection is a hypnotic visualization of nature’s tapestry, the symbiotic cycles of our biosphere that interweave the air, land, and oceans. It also reflects the ongoing dissection of the rhythms of life and resonates with the fragility within these interwoven worlds” van Herpen explains.

You can read more about the intricate techniques used to create the garments—including one developed in collaboration with Canada-based Professor of Architecture Philip Beesley—on the designer’s website. Van Herpen also released a behind-the-scenes short documentary that takes viewers inside her atelier, which is embedded below. Explore more of van Herpen’s mesmerizing creations on Instagram. (via Hi-Fructose)

 

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Art

Layers of Crocheted Fabric Drape Across a Large-Scale Inflatable Installation Inside of Paris’s Le Bon Marché

March 2, 2019

Andrew LaSane

“Simone” (2019), Handmade woolen crochet, fabrics, ornaments, LED, polyester, inflatable, fans, microcontrollers, power supply unit, steel cables. Image: Gabriel de la Chapelle/Courtesy Le Bon Marché

Portuguese artist Joana Vasconcelos (previously) recently installed a large site-specific inflatable installation covered with crocheted fabric and embellishments inside of Paris’ oldest department store, Le Bon Marché. The suspended two-part work, titled “Simone,” is the latest in the artist’s Valkyries series, and takes inspiration from the female figures in Norse mythology.

Named for French human rights activists Simone du Beauvoir and Simone Weil, the large piece features two orb-like structures that loom over visitors along the store’s perimeter, and is connected by tentacles that weave around the building’s iconic escalators. The inflatable is dressed in fabric with handmade crocheted details that dangle from its limbs to give it the appearance of an alien chandelier. Color-changing LEDs are also embedded throughout the work and pulse rhythmically, which gives the strange being the entrancing power of a bioluminescent deep sea organism.

Vasconcelos tells Colossal that like the winged-horse riders, the works in her Valkyries series “are both warrior and protective creatures, in the way they attack and contaminate yet adapt and engage with the spaces they inhabit.” To see more of the artist’s work, follow her on Instagram and Facebook.

Luís Vasconcelos/Courtesy Unidade Infinita Projectos

Luís Vasconcelos/Courtesy Unidade Infinita Projectos

Luís Vasconcelos/Courtesy Unidade Infinita Projectos

Gabriel de la Chapelle/Courtesy Le Bon Marché

Gabriel de la Chapelle/Courtesy Le Bon Marché

Gabriel de la Chapelle/Courtesy Le Bon Marché

Gabriel de la Chapelle/Courtesy Le Bon Marché

 

 



Art Craft

Colorful Quilts by Bisa Butler use African Fabrics to Form Nuanced Portraits

February 21, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

“Three Kings”, detail

Artist Bisa Butler draws from an array of vibrant patterned fabrics to create portraits of everyday people. She eschews representational colors, favoring layered jewel-toned hues to form the skin of her Black subjects, and often groups figures together into strong silhouettes.

“I have always been drawn to portraits,” Butler explains in a statement on her gallery’s website. “I was the little girl who would sit next to my grandmother and ask her to go through her old family photo albums. I was the one who wanted to hear the story behind every picture. This inquisitiveness has stayed with me to this day. I often start my pieces with a black and white photo and allow myself to tell the story.”

Butler studied fine art at Howard University. In a video interview by BRIC TV, the artist explains that she began using fabric in her paintings in college, and then converted to quilting as a way to continue her dedicated art practice while protecting her young daughter from toxic materials and fumes.

The artist was born in Orange, New Jersey, and now lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. She is represented by Claire Oliver Gallery. You can see more from Butler on Instagram. (via #WOMENSART)

“Three Kings” (2018), quilted and appliquéd cotton, wool and chiffon, 95 x 72 in / 241.3 x 182.9 cm

“The Mighty Gents” (2018), quilted and appliquéd cotton, wool and chiffon, 67 x 78 in / 170.2 x 198.1 cm

“The Mighty Gents”, detail

“The Mighty Gents”, detail

“Anaya with Oranges”

“The Safety Patrol” (2018), quilted and appliquéd cotton, wool and chiffon, 90 x 82 in / 228.6 x 208.3 cm

“The Safety Patrol”, detail

L: “The Unconquerable Lyric” R: “I Want To Smell The Flowers”

“Black Star Family, first class tickets to Liberia” (2018), cotton, silk chiffon, satin, silk and lace, 79 x 85 in / 200.7 x 215.9 cm

 

 



Art Photography

Camouflaged Self-Portraits Conceal Photographer Cecilia Paredes Against Bright Floral Patterns

November 26, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

"Both Worlds" (2009), all images provided by Cecilia Paredes

“Both Worlds” (2009), all images provided by Cecilia Paredes

Peruvian artist Cecilia Paredes is the subject of her own richly patterned photographs, yet her figure is often difficult to locate at first. For each portrait she hangs boldly printed fabrics as the backdrop, which she then matches either with her painted skin, custom clothing, or both. Her torso, arms, and face fade into the background, as the curvature of her body and brown hair become some of the only indicators of her presence.

“I wrap, cover, or paint my body with the same pattern of the material and re-present myself as part of that landscape,” she explains. “Through this act, I am working on the theme of building my own identification with the entourage or part of the world where I live or where I feel I can call home. My bio has been described as nomadic so maybe this is also a need of addressing the process of constant relocation.”

Paredes was born in Lima, Peru and currently works between Philadelphia, Lima, and Costa Rica. Currently she has a solo exhibition at Museum of Latin America Art (MOLAA) in Los Angeles through December 30, 2018, and will open another solo exhibition at the Museum of the University of Navarra (MUN) in Spain on March 27, 2019. (via LensCulture)

'Dreaming Rose"

‘Dreaming Rose”

"Mia Standing with Butterflies" (2015)

“Mia Standing with Butterflies” (2015)

'Paradise Hands" (2011)

‘Paradise Hands” (2011)

"En tus alas" (2014)

“En tus alas” (2014)

"Lilly" (2014)

“Lilly” (2014)

"Nocturne" (2009)

“Nocturne” (2009)

"Art Nouveau" (2011)

“Art Nouveau” (2011)

"Blue Landscape" (2007)

“Blue Landscape” (2007)