From the days of the Vikings, the loom has been a basic household furnishing in Scandinavia. As a child, I sat at my grandmother's side on the loom bench, as she wove her “treasures” of fancy weaving ... rugs, wall hangings and patterned fabrics. My Grandfather Carlson built her high castled box loom.
Later, in high school, I experimented with latch-hook rug weaving and, still later, designed rugs and hangings for my mother's hooked rugs.
In the late 40's, I saw an exhibition of modern French tapestries by Jean Lurcat and his fellow designers at the Worcester Art Museum, where I was a student at the art school. These images became etched in my memory.
In 1950-51, at Yale’s School of Fine Arts, I studied the interaction of color through countless paper collages with Josef Albers. However, his wife, Anni, was a formidable weaver/designer in her own right. Her work and writings on tapestry weaving are seminal to my work in fibers.
In 1971, I spent several months in Ireland and, at Killibegs, I visited a rug and tapestry works. I was intrigued by what I saw and, when I returned to the States, I began my first tapestry weaving on a loom that I built based on a vertical Navaho rug loom. And, as it is said, “The rest is history”.
My designs, for the most part, are abstract, based on the technical restrictions of tapestry weaving. I reject realism per se, as I have no interest in doing in fiber what is far easier to do in drawing or painting. I opt for the vibrant color possibilities inherent in dyed wool, acrylic and metal fibers, and the power of straight-forward forms that result from the simple “tabby” weave and interlocking of edges. I often blend colors, sometimes harmonious and sometimes disparate ... called, in the French tradition melange or chiní. I utilize the techniques of Flemskväv, Kilem, Soumac and Native American weaving.
In a sense, I try to let the tapestry weave itself.
ANNI ALBERS, 1965
“I HAVE MADE NO DISTINCTION BETWEEN THE
THE INDUSTRIAL DESIGNER, AND THE ARTIST
BECAUSE THE FUNDAMENTAL,
IF NOT THE SPECIFIC CONSIDERATIONS
ARE THE SAME ...
FOR THOSE WHO WORK WITH THE CONSCIENCE
AND THE APPERCEPTION OF THE ARTIST.”
The Peaceweaver's Web Tapestry
More about the Peaceweaver's Web
60" x 50"
“Ballo In Maschera”
The Masked Ball
Persian wool, DMC floss, metal fibers and Japan gold on 10/2 cotton warp, Spaced 11 ends per inch. It took two awards in 2001 at the New England Weavers exhibit: First Place in Tapestry & Best in Show.
It is a abstract visual interpretation, in wool weft on linen warp, based on the opera by Giuseppi Verdi, Un Ballo in Maschera.
16" x 16"