Art Out and About: Exhibitions Across the US

Posted in Art, Art Textiles, Basketry, Exhibitions, Fiber Sculpture, Galleries, Installations, Paper, Sculpture, Tapestry on August 2nd, 2014 by arttextstyle

Coast-to-coast cultural opportunities to enjoy in August and through to November.

Traced Memories by Adela Akers, photo by Tom Grotta

Traced Memories by Adela Akers, photo by Tom Grotta

San Francisco, California
Adela Akers: Traced Memories, Artist-in-Residence
Through August 31st
Wednesdays–Sundays, 1–5 pm, plus Friday nights until 8:45 pm
Artist Reception: Friday, August 29, 6–8:30 p.m.
Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco de Young/Legion of Honor
Golden Gate Park
50 Hagiwara Tea Garden Drive
San Francisco, California
https://deyoung.famsf.org/programs/artist-studio/august-artist-residence-adela-akers-traced-memories
Textile artist Adela Akers has moved her studio to the de Young for a month. Visitors to the new studio will learn how each choice in her art-making process contributes to the unique character and quality of her work. Throughout her residency, Akers will invite visitors to engage in hands-on activities that explore her creative process—from inspiration and research to preparation of the materials she has selected to convey her concept to creation and final presentation of the finished artworks. Akers’s work has been influenced and informed by pre-Columbian textiles and, most recently, paintings by women of the Mbuti people of the Ituri Forest in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Journeying from one point to another has been a physical and transformative reality in her life, increasing her self-confidence and expanding her vision of the world. Akers feels fortunate to have made these geographical voyages and to have experienced country living’s broad horizons and quiet strength, the power of nature and the palpitating rhythm of cities.

Athena by Nancy Koenigsberg, photo by Tom Grotta

Athena by Nancy Koenigsberg, photo by Tom Grotta

Brockton, Massachusetts
Game Changers: Fiber Art Masters and Innovators
Through November 23rd
Fuller Craft Museum
455 Oak Street
Brockton, MA
http://fullercraft.org/press/game-changers-fiber-art-masters-and-innovators/
“Game changers” are artists, past and present, who continuously revisit traditional techniques and materials while developing revolutionary approaches in the realm of fiber art. Every work in the exhibition was chosen to showcase the individual practice of each invited artist. These creators epitomize the dynamism and fluidity of work in fiber. Artists featured in the exhibition include: Olga de Amaral, Dorothy Gill Barnes, Mary Bero, Nancy Moore Bess, Archie Brennan, John Cardin, Lia Cook, John Garrett, Jan Hopkins, Mary Lee Hu, Lissa Hunter, Diane Itter, Michael James, Naomi Kobayashi, Nancy Koenigsberg, Gyongy Laky, Chunghie Lee, Kari Lonning, Susan Martin Maffei, John McQueen, Norma Minkowitz, Michael F. Rohde, Ed Rossbach and Kay Sekimachi.

Midland Museum Forming: The Synergy Between Basketry and Sculpture, photo by Jennifer Falck Linssen

Midland Museum Forming: The Synergy Between Basketry and Sculpture, photo by Jennifer Falck Linssen

Midland, Michigan
Forming: The Synergy Between Basketry and Sculpture
Through September 7th
Alden B. Dow Museum
Midland Center for the Arts
1801 West Saint Andrews Road
Midland, Michigan
http://www.mcfta.org/ab-dow-museum-announces-summer-exhibitions-press-release/
The works by eight artists featured in Forming: The Synergy Between Basketry and Sculpture, including Jennifer Falck Linssen, were designed and executed as alternative approaches to sculptural form, in which the line dissolves between traditional basketry and contemporary sculpture. A selection of artists from across America inquisitively open our eyes to new alternatives in basketry and fiber-based sculptural form. The craftsmanship is superb, the creative and technical finesse is complex while the vision is beyond today yet with inspiration from long-revered fiber traditions.

Midland, Michigan
Modern Twist: Contemporary Japanese Bamboo Art

Cocoon by Jiro Yonezawa, photo by Tom Grotta

Cocoon by Jiro Yonezawa, photo by Tom Grotta

Through September 7th
Alden B. Dow Museum
Midlands Center for the Arts
1801 West Saint Andrews Road
Midland, Michigan
http://www.mcfta.org/ab-dow-museum-announces-summer-exhibitions-press-release/

Bamboo is a quintessential part of Japanese culture, shaping the country’s social, artistic, and spiritual landscape. Although bamboo is a prolific natural resource, it is a challenging artistic medium. There are fewer than 100 professional bamboo artists in Japan today. Mastering the art form requires decades of meticulous practice while learning how to harvest, split, and plait the bamboo. Modern Twist brings 38 exceptional works by 17 artists, including Jiro Yonezawa, to U.S. audiences, celebrating the artists who have helped to redefine a traditional craft as a modern genre, inventing unexpected new forms and pushing the medium to groundbreaking levels of conceptual, technical, and artistic ingenuity.

29ww EB mixed editions #12, Wendy Wahl, Encylodpedia Britanica pages, poplar frame, 24" x 32" x 1.5",  2011 photo by Tom Grotta

29ww EB mixed editions #12, Wendy Wahl, Encylodpedia Britanica pages, poplar frame, 24″ x 32″ x 1.5″, 2011
photo by Tom Grotta

Jamestown, Rhode Island
PAPER-MADE
Through August 30th
Wed. – Sat. 10am – 2pm
Jamestown Arts Center
18 Valley Street
Jamestown, Rhode Island
http://www.jamestownartcenter.org/exhibitions
Paper art is emerging as a global phenomenon. PAPER-MADE explores paper’s transformation from an everyday object into an exquisite three dimensional sculptural artwork. The exhibit’s title PAPER-MADE is a reference to Marcel Duchamp’s concept of the “ready-made,” since paper is an everyday object. The alchemic transformation from simple paper to art highlights the artist’s creativity and demonstrates the limitless potential of the art form. Eighteen showcased artists, including Wendy Wahl, explore this material’s ephemeral nature and beauty. Each artist explores different qualities of paper, from hand-made paper and paper string, to site-specific installation made of book pages, from Korean joomchi paper to found lottery tickets and archival photographs.

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Woven Work/Woven Words — Hiding in the Weave Hits the Shelves

Posted in Art, Art Textiles, Book Recommendations, Books, Commentary, Japanese Art, Tapestry on July 21st, 2014 by arttextstyle

 

THE FLOW OF WATER 6
Naomi Kobayashi, paper and thread, 12.5” x 22.375” x 2”, 2008, photo by Tom Grotta

THE FLOW OF WATER 6
Naomi Kobayashi, paper and thread, 12.5” x 22.375” x 2”, 2008, photo by Tom Grotta

Three years ago, browngrotta arts facilitated correspondence between artist Naomi Kobayashi and author (and collector) William Bayer about the artist’s technique of weaving paper strips with thread. Bayer envisioned a character in a novel weaving a message into her work, which another character would deconstruct to de-code. Naomi provided technical advice — yes, it could be done and the message could be read, if the weaver used oil-based ink. Flash forward to 2014.

Hiding the Weave by William Bayer

Hiding the Weave by William Bayer

Bayer’s book, Hiding in the Weave, is off the word processor and on the shelves. Written from the perspective of 18-year-old Joel Barlev, a senior at Delamere, a school geared to talented young artists, the novel plays off themes typically found in classic boarding school novels — requited and unrequited romance, alienation, rebellion, sexuality, moral dilemmas and evolving maturity. Joel, a gifted ceramic artist, finds himself falling in love with Liv Anders, a talented weaver, who observes: “You gouge your pots to show your pain to the world. I hide my pain in the weave.”  It turns out there is something more tangible hidden in one of Liv’s abstract weavings, and when tragedy strikes, Joel and his two best friends, Justin and Kate, feel compelled to uncover it. Naomi Kobayashi’s work graces the cover; her art informs the content. Get a copy at browngrotta.com.

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Dispatches: Chicago is a Walking Town

Posted in Art, Sculpture on June 19th, 2014 by arttextstyle
Sculptures by Steinunn Thórarinsdóttir of Iceland in Grant Park, photo by Tom Grotta

Sculptures by Steinunn Thórarinsdóttir of Iceland in Grant Park, photo by Tom Grotta

Chicago is a terrific town for walking. There is public sculpture everywhere of the most enjoyable kind — kids play on it; adults revel in it and the perspective alters as your vantage point changes.

Agora by Magdalena Abakanowicz in Grant Park, photo by Tom Grotta

Agora by Magdalena Abakanowicz in Grant Park, photo by Tom Grotta

There are great galleries and museums and entertaining finds around every corner. There are bars and restaurants aplenty — on the river, with patios, with views and truly exceptional food.

Imaginative Signage, Photo by Tom Grotta

Imaginative Signage, Photo by Tom Grotta

We were there for the opening of Ethel Stein: Master Weaver at the Art Institute of Chicago (through November 9, 2014). The weather was ideal, we wandered for hours and found much to amuse and admire, as you can see.

Untitled Sculpture by Pablo Picasso in Daley Plaza, Photo by Tom grotta

Untitled Sculpture by Pablo Picasso in Daley Plaza, Photo by Tom grotta

River View, photo by tom grotta

River View, photo by tom grotta

Art House, photo by tom grotta

Art House, photo by tom grotta

Cloud Park by Anish Kapoor. Millennium Park, Photo by Tom Grotta

Cloud Park by Anish Kapoor. Millennium Park, Photo by Tom Grotta

Lobby, Macy’s Flagship, Photo by Tom Grotta

Lobby, Macy’s Flagship, Photo by Tom Grotta

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Ethel Stein, Master Weaver Opens at the Art Institute, Chicago on Friday

Posted in Art, Art Textiles, Exhibitions, Installations, Tapestry on June 10th, 2014 by arttextstyle
Ethel Stein on her loom. Photo by Tom Grotta

Ethel Stein on her loom. Photo by Tom Grotta

This week will mark the opening at the of an extraordinary exhibition at the Art Institute of Chicago of works by Ethel Stein, a master weaver who, at 96, is at last gaining the wider recognition she so decidedly deserves. Stein has never been overly concerned with promoting or marketing her work, though browngrotta arts has been pleased to document and promote her art since 2008. She has been steadfastly “counter-trend,” as textile designer Jack Lenor Larsen has aptly put it, creating squares of quiet pattern to be placed on walls at a time when other textile artists were emphasizing the sculptural potential of fiber by working in three dimensions. Produced on a drawloom—a type of handloom that incorporates a figure harness capable of controlling each warp thread separately—her work seems deceptively simple, but as one understands the mysteries and complexities of this weaving method historically favored for creating figured textiles, the sophistication and challenge of her work become undeniable.

Ethel Stein's Blue & White Shift. Photo by Tom Grotta

Ethel Stein’s Blue & White Shift. Photo by Tom Grotta

Stein’s work combines traditional weaving techniques, possible only on a drawloom and used by few contemporary weavers, with modernist sensibilities influenced by Josef Albers, who trained in the German Bauhaus with its emphasis on simplicity, order, functionality, and modesty. “As a weaver,” Lucy Commoner, Senior Textile Conservator at the Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum, Smithsonian Institution, has explained, “Stein’s work is informed by her research in museum textile collections, a rich source of design resource material.” In the 1970s, Stein studied and analyzed textiles in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Cooper-Hewitt. At the Cooper-Hewitt, she explored a vast collection, from ancient to contemporary pieces, and, with former Curator of Textiles, Milton Sonday, analyzed through a microscope the woven surfaces of textiles in the collection, which she documented by producing drawings of the structures. “The experience was crucial to Stein’s development as an artist,” writes Commoner, “and stimulated her interest in decoding how these historic textile structures could be produced on a contemporary draw loom. Ethel Stein’s mastery of a variety of historical textile techniques gives her a wide range of artistic expression through the control of color and pattern.” Stein has favored three particular structures with strong historical traditions—damask, double-cloth, and lampas—and it is due to the flexibility of the drawloom that her work appears so meticulously refined yet refreshingly uncomplicated. You can glimpse a bit of her process in this short video by Mark Chamberlin: http://vimeo.com/97457445.

Ethel Stein Vimeo Video

Ethel Stein Vimeo Video

Ethel Stein, Master Weaver, presented in the newly reopened textiles galleries comprised of the Agnes Allerton Gallery and the Elizabeth F. Cheney Gallery, presents drawloom weavings executed by the artist from 1982 through 2008. All works are either already in the collection of the Art Institute or have been promised as gifts. The retrospective installation celebrates in particular Ethel Stein’s generous donation of 34 of her own works two years ago, as well as Leanne Lachman’s promised gift of four additional pieces, which help fill out the picture of Stein’s impressive career. These 38 weavings join a work in five parts, woven in 1982, added to the collection in 1985, courtesy of the Nicole Williams Contemporary Textile Fund.

Ethel Stein Monograph Cover

Ethel Stein Monograph Cover

A catalog prepared by browngrotta arts in 2008, Ethel Stein: Weaver, which includes an introduction by Jack Lenor Larsen and an essay by Lucy Commoner, Senior Textile Conservator at the Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum, Smithsonian Institution, will be available at The Art Institute and on our website: http://browngrotta.com/Pages/m03.php. The exhibition runs from Friday June 13th through Sunday, November 9, 2014. For more information, visit: http://www.artic.edu/exhibition/ethel-stein-master-weaver-0.

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Guest Post: Wendy Wahl on Big Beautiful Books

Posted in Art, Books, Installations, Paper, Sculpture on May 29th, 2014 by arttextstyle
 “Branches Unbound”, Wendy Wahl at the Grand Rapids Art Museum, Photo by: Jim West

Branches Unbound, Wendy Wahl’s work at the Grand Rapids Art Museum, Photo by: Jim West

It’s not news that the world of printed text on paper is challenged in the 21st century by digital media and the reorganization of how information is created, distributed and accessed.  Knowledge saving and sharing continues to be reinvented – 5000 years ago the Incans used a device called a quipu made of string and knots for communication, 3000 years

 “Ed Ruscha” at Gagosian Gallery, Chelsea, photo by: Librado Romero

“Ed Ruscha” at Gagosian Gallery, Chelsea, photo by: Librado Romero

ago the Sumerians had libraries containing clay tablets while the Egyptians used papyrus and parchment scrolls. During the Han Dynasty the Chinese invented paper to write on and in the 15th century Europeans began printing with movable type to create a codex. In the 1970s computers were incorporated into the printing process.

photo #3.ww

Matej Kren’s, Book Cell at Centro de Arte Moderna, Lisbon Portugal. Photo by: Ferran Moreno Lanza

Social and environmental conditions along with technological developments influence the structure of books that are produced. These objects evolve to fit the needs of the cultures that use them. Today there

Erik Olofson’s furniture, courtesy of Big Cozy Books.

Erik Olofson’s furniture, courtesy of Big Cozy Books.

are e-readers with names like kindle, nook and ibook.  For nearly a decade my response to the current transformation has been to use discarded encyclopedias as a material to create art works and large scaled installations as an expression of the significance and potency of the printed word on paper.

Kansas City Public Library, Missouri. photo by Mike Sinclair

Kansas City Public Library, Missouri. photo by Mike Sinclair

The form of the book has been used physically and figuratively in paintings, in architecture, as furniture and as sculpture – in and out of the landscape. The medium is the message and, because of a typesetting error, more accurately, the massage. Thank you Marshall McLuhan.

“book outcropping” at Penistone Hill Country Park. courtesy of Google images.

Book outcropping at Penistone Hill Country Park. courtesy of Google images.

Three Gorges Dam Project, Tanziling Ridge - Yangtze River, China. Photo by  Sharon Wahl

The artist at the Three Gorges Dam Project, Tanziling Ridge – Yangtze River, China.
Photo by Sharon Wahl

Wendy Wahl

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Art Update: What’s On in America and Abroad

Posted in Art, Art Textiles, Basketry, Exhibitions, Fiber Sculpture, Galleries, Installations, Japanese Art, Museums, Paper, Sculpture, Tapestry on May 8th, 2014 by arttextstyle

 

Recall, Ane Henricksen, 2010. photo by Ane Henricksen

Recall, Ane Henricksen, 2010. photo by Ane Henricksen

Several artists represented by browngrotta arts are included in exhibitions in Europe and the US this Spring. Among the largest is Artapestry3 at the Jean-Lurçat Museum of Contemporary Tapestry in Angers, France. This is the third is edition of Artapestry3, an initiative launched by the European Tapestry Forum (ETF). The event contemporary  offers visitors an unusual perspective by aligning the works of 25 international textile artists, including Ane Hendricksen and Grethe Sørensen, with the Museum’s collection, which includes work by such artists as Paul Klee, Alexander Calder, Thomas Gleb, Magdalena Abakanowicz and Jean Lurçat. Also included in the exhibition are examples of traditional tapestry works whose iconographic repertory has inspired contemporary creation. The exhibition is structured around nine major themes that enable comparisons between the contemporary pieces that form part of Artapestry3 and the more traditional works from the Angers’ collections. Among these themes, in the Vitality section, a visitor may discover the Red Sun tapestry by Alexander Calder (1919-1976) alongside the lively motifs of Ariadna Donner’s The wolf crossed the road. In the Object section, visitors can admire Temps passé by Pierre Daquin (1936) next to Ivete Vecenáne’s The Bowl. The exhibition runs through May 18th. For more information visit the event website: musees.angers.fr/expositions/en-ce-moment/artapestry3-angers-allers-retours/artapestry3-angers-allers-retours/index.html.

Naoko Serino installing her works as "Fiber Futures" travels to Spain.

Naoko Serino installing her works as “Fiber Futures” travels to Spain.

Fiber Futures: Pioneers of Japanese Textile Art, continues its travels. It is open at c art c., the Computense Art Center in Madrid, Spainthrough May 18, 2014. The exhibition features Japan’s most important contemporary textile artists, including, Naoko Serino, Hideho Tanaka, Kiyomi Iwata, Naomi Kobayashi, Hisako Sekijima and Kyoko Kumai. For more information visit: www.ucm.es/fiber-future.

works by Jennifer Falck Linssen and Norikko Takamiya

works by Jennifer Falck Linssen and Norikko Takamiya

In the US, in Mesa, Arizona, Norikko Takamiya and Jennifer Falck Linssen join an inventive group of artists working with paper.Fold, Paper, Scissors runs through August 10, 2014 at the Mesa Contemporary Art Museum. The Opening Reception is Friday, May 9th from 7 to 10 p.m. (We’ll be there!) The Mesa Contemporary Arts Museum at Mesa Arts Center is at One East Main Street, Downtown Mesa, Arizona, for more information, call: 480-644-6560 or visit:  www.MesaArtsCenter.com.

Big Tera, 2007 - Tissage de coton 259 x 127 cm

Big Tera, 2007 – Tissage de coton 259 x 127 cm

Lia Cook’s work is the subject of a one-person exhibition at the Drapers Gallery in Liege, BelgiumLia Cook: Icons Jacquard highlights faces woven in large scale on a Jacquard loom. For more information visit the Gallery’s site: www.lesdrapiers.be/events/lia-cook.

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Catalog News – Of Two Minds: Artists Who Do More Than One of a Kind

Posted in Art, Art Textiles, Basketry, Books, Eco-Art, Exhibitions, Fiber Sculpture, Galleries, Gifts, Installations, Mixed Media, Paper, Sculpture, Tapestry on May 3rd, 2014 by arttextstyle

 

Of Two Minds: Artists Who Do More Than One of a Kind Exhibition Catalog Cover

Of Two Minds: Artists Who Do More Than One of a Kind Exhibition Catalog Cover

Hot off the presses is our 42nd catalog, Of Two Minds: Artists Who Do More Than One of a Kind. The 76-page full-color volume features 87 images of work by 25 international artists in textiles, glass and mixed media. Dorothy Gill Barnes Elm Tree ProjectThe introductory essay, Transcendence: Language, Universality and the Plastic Arts was written by  Elisabeth R. Agro, the Nancy M. McNeil Associate Curator of American, Modern and Contemporary Craft and Decorative Arts at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. “Artists retain their own language of making and identity within but share a universal nonverbal language that communicates formation, movement, attitude and meaning,” she writes. In Of Two Minds: Artists Who Do More Than One of a Kind,  “[a]rt and language are intertwined as conveyances of communication.” Order a copy for $35.00 plus tax and shipping from browngrotta arts at http://browngrotta.com/Pages/c38.php.Naomi Kobayashi catalog spread

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Don’t Miss – 10 Days Only: Of Two Minds: Artists Who Do More Than One of a Kind, browngrotta arts, Wilton, CT

Posted in Art, Art Textiles, Basketry, Exhibitions, Fiber Sculpture, Galleries, Installations, Japanese Art, Paper, Sculpture, Tapestry on April 21st, 2014 by arttextstyle

This Saturday, April 26th, marks the opening of Of Two Minds: Artists Who Do More Than One of a Kind at browngrotta arts, 276 Ridgefield Road, Wilton, CT. Open for just 10 days, Of Two Minds features 25 international artists working in a a variety of media, including, glass, wood, watercolor, metal and fiber. The artists in the exhibition show remarkable range, working in different mediums, mastering different techniques and materials and creating complementary or contrasting works along the way. “Painters paint, sculptors sculpt, but the textile and mixed media artists in Of Two Minds are less restricted by material or technique,” explains browngrotta arts’ co-curator, Tom Grotta. “Represented in major museums, these artists weave, plait, knit, crochet, stitch and felt and also carve, construct, draw, dye, weld and paint.” Each artist in Of Two Minds has provided at least two contrasting works — several will exhibit more than two.

Detail of MarianBijlenga installation of glass and fiber, photo by Tom Grotta

Detail of MarianBijlenga installation of glass and fiber, photo by Tom Grotta

Marian Bijlenga, of the Netherlands, has sent a stitched work of horsehair, one of fish scales, a wall assemblage of glass “doodles” resulting from her glass experiments and also two glass sculptures.

Tissus d’ombres, detail, Stéphanie Jacques’,photo by Tom Grotta

Tissus d’ombres, detail, Stéphanie Jacques’,photo by Tom Grotta

Stéphanie Jacques of Belgium exhibits clay-coated and textile-edged woven baskets, with wood-worked bases along with a stitched photographic print.

Vanishing and Emerging installation detail by Hideho Tanaka, photo by Tom Grotta

Vanishing and Emerging installation detail by Hideho Tanaka, photo by Tom Grotta

Hideho Tanaka of Japan combines a large patched linen weaving with sculptures of torched paper and steel.

detail of Lawrence LaBianca installation from Of Two Minds, photo by Tom Grotta

detail of Lawrence LaBianca installation from Of Two Minds, photo by Tom Grotta

Lawrence LaBianca of California exhibits works combining glassblowing, prints, wood and metal work. LaBianca’s Skiff is interactive, when a viewer picks up the phone, he or she can hear the rushing river that inspired the work. The full list of participating artists is:
Dona Anderson (US),  Dorothy Gill Barnes ( US),  Dail Behennah (UK),  Nancy Moore Bess (US),  Marian Bijlenga (NL),  Birgit Birkkjaer (DK),  Gali Cnaani (IL),  Agneta Hobin (FI),  Stéphanie Jacques (BE),  Tamiko Kawata (JP),  Naomi Kobayashi (JP),  Kyoko Kumai (JP),  Lawrence LaBianca(US),  Gyöngy Laky(US),  Sue Lawty (UK),  John McQueen (US),  Norma Minkowitz (US),  Scott Rothstein (US),  Axel Russmeyer (DE),  Hisako Sekijima (JP),  Karyl Sisson (US),  Jin-Sook So (JP),  Hideho Tanaka (JP),  Deborah Valoma (US) and Grethe Wittrock (DK).

Wave Hill Bread

Wave Hill Breads

The Artists Reception and Opening begins at 12 p.m. on Saturday. Several of the artists will be in attendance including, Tamiko Kawata (US),  Norma Minkowitz (US) , Sue Lawty (UK) and John McQueen (US). We’ll also be tasting artisan breads from Wave Hill Breads. From Sunday the 27th through Sunday, May 4th, our hours will be 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. or by appointment. Call us at 203-834-0623 if you wish to come earlier or later. We are at work on a catalog for the exhibition which you can purchase at bga or online after May 1st. For more information visit: http://browngrotta.com/Pages/newthisweek.php.

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Make A Day of It: Of Two Minds and Other Art Activities in Our Area

Posted in Art, Art Textiles, Basketry, Exhibitions, Fiber Sculpture, Galleries, Installations, Museums, Sculpture, Tapestry on April 14th, 2014 by arttextstyle
Glow & Glitter, Agneta Hobin, mica, steel mesh, 8” x 8” each, 2014; Alchemia, Agneta Hobin, gilded gold-leaf wooden reliefs, 8” x 8” each, 2014, photo by Tom Grotta

Glow & Glitter, Agneta Hobin, mica, steel mesh, 8” x 8” each, 2014; Alchemia, Agneta Hobin, gilded gold-leaf wooden reliefs, 8” x 8” each, 2014, photo by Tom Grotta

There are cultural opportunities aplenty in our area in late April and early May. In addition to Of Two Minds: Artists That Do More Than One of a Kind at browngrotta arts (bga), 276 Ridgefield Road, Wilton, Connecticut from April 26th (12pm – 6pm) through May 4th (10 am – 5 pm, April 27th – May 4th), there are exhibitions of interest in nearby Ridgefield, Westport and at the Wilton Historical Society:

Standing in the Shadows of Love: The Aldrich Collection 1964–1974 Part 1 Robert Rauschenberg, (1925–2008)  Robert Rauschenberg, Umpire, 1965; Private collection

Standing in the Shadows of Love: The Aldrich Collection 1964–1974 Part 1
Robert Rauschenberg, (1925–2008)
Robert Rauschenberg, Umpire, 1965; Private collection

Celebrating 50 Years:
Standing in the Shadows of Love: The Aldrich Collection 1964–1974
Robert Indiana, Robert Morris, Ree Morton, Robert Rauschenberg, Robert Smithson

Aldrich Museum of Art (6.13 miles from bga)
258 Main Street
Ridgefield, CT 06877
http://www.aldrichart.org

Hours
Tuesday – Sunday, 12 to 5 p.m.

The Aldrich will celebrate its 50th Anniversary with three overlapping series of exhibitions that highlight not only the Museum’s legacy, but also the relationship between the era in which it was founded and our current cultural landscape. The first, Standing in the Shadows of Love: The Aldrich Collection 1964–1974 — features iconic, historical works by Robert Indiana, Robert Morris, Ree Morton, Robert Rauschenberg, and Robert Smithson that represent the Museum’s early collection acquired by founder Larry Aldrich.

SOLOS 2014

WAC.logoWestport Arts Center (7.01 miles from bga)
51 Riverside Avenue
Westport, CT. 06880
www.westportartscenter.org

Hours:
Monday – Saturday 10am – 5pm
Sunday 12pm – 4pm

Of 150 applicants, Patricia Hickson, the Emily Hall Tremaine Curator of Contemporary Art at the Wadsworth Atheneum in Hartford, Connecticut has selected 12 artists, including browngrotta arts’ friend, Ken Resen, to exhibit in Westport Arts Center’s SOLOS 2014.

wiltonhistoricalsocieylogoChanging Times — Hand Tools Before the Industrial Revolution: Connecticut Tools of the Trades from the Walter R.T. Smith Collection 
and
Tavern Signs & Paintings: Heidi Howard, Maker & Painter

In its Burt Barn Gallery, the Society has mounted a series of eccentrically shaped, unusual tools. In the Sloan House Gallery, the Society presents an exhibition of contemporary interpretations of 18th and 19th century trade and tavern signs crafted from hand-planed 100- to 200-year old boards, painted by Heidi Howard.

Wilton Historical Society (1.98 miles from bga)

224 Danbury Road
Wilton, CT 06897
www.wiltonhistorical.org
Hours:
Tuesday – Saturday 10am – 4pm
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Process Notes: Marian Bijlenga, Musings on 30 Years of Work To Date; 30 More to Go

Posted in Art, Art Textiles, Fiber Sculpture, Installations, Mixed Media on April 3rd, 2014 by arttextstyle

photo by Marian Bijlenga

Marian Bijlenga PortraitDutch artist, Marian Bijlenga, recently compiled this group of miniatures reflecting 30 years of her artistic career, which she reckons is just a halfway point. Below she talks about her process, adapted from an interview by Manufactured Design By Architects (MDBA). The Spanish firm creates spaces that stir emotions and locates decorative elements and furniture to suit. It sources artists, like Marian Bijlenga, who inspire its work and interviews them at MDBY. MDB Architects.

1994-2012.B

Blue Holes, DetailI studied at the textile design department of Rietveld Art Acdaemy in Amsterdam (1977-1982), but I developed the techniques I use myself. When I studied textiles, I began by learning to weave, but for me, weaving was too slow. It took a lot of time before you could start, and I did not like the technique. I was looking for a more direct way of working. I took the threads held by the loom and began instead to make drawings, stiffening the fiber by dipping it in glue. 1986-1994.AMeander DetailIt was a much freer technique. But glue and thread are not very durable, so I was looking for a material that was stiff on its own, and discovered the horsehair. The fiber provides the necessary strength and flexibility to construct embroidered compositions of lines and dots.
1986-1994.B
JAPAN 3 DetailMy work is less preplanned and more of a natural process: it grows. The production may seem as painstaking as weaving, but it is the immediacy of the process that is important to me. I make one element and give it a place on my wall, and then I make another element, so the work grows until I like it. The work itself is meticulous, but I see the construction of each individual element as just the beginning. After I have the pattern pinned on my wall, then the real work starts. In the beginning, it is like playing. Then, finally, I use water-soluble fabric and make a drawing on it, so I know how to attach the pieces. Then I use monofilament to attach the small pieces to each other, and finally it all becomes one big piece. You only need some pins at the top of the piece to hang it on the wall. When seen with the right amount of natural light, the work seems to float just in front of the wall, defying gravity.

1982-1986.A
Palimpsest 1, DetailMuch of my early work was inspired by calligraphy, but I explored the positive and negative, abstracted shapes created by calligraphic forms, instead of its narrative possibilities, It is very interesting when I cannot read the words — the rhythm of the writing, the space between the letters and the connections between the lines. It is still a source of inspiration, but my work has grown more abstract. Nature is more important than writing. Small circles, ovals and streaks grow into compositions that map positive and negative space.
 I am fascinated by dots, lines and contours, by their rhythmical movements and the empty spaces they confine. The shadow on a white wall is an essential part of my work. By leaving some space between my structure and the wall, the object is freed from its background and interacts with the white wall. I need the silence of a white wall.
 1982-1986.B
COLOR DOTS SPRING ZEELAND DetailAdvice I’d give to others: Be guided by what happens around you. Don’t try too hard to direct, plan, master everything. For me, it is more important to be led by what crosses your path, the accidental encounter, things that happen outside yourself.
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