Friday, November 16, 2012

World of Threads: Groupings of Small Pieces

Do you have many small pieces, perhaps made as samples? I saw several works at the World of Threads which may have begun in just this way. I think the way they were grouped for display was very effective.
"Postcards from the Scrap Heap",  Joanne Young

Above is Joanne Young's "Postcards from the Scrap Heap", on view at the Joshua Creek Heritage Art Centre. Each piece in the coherent group was stitched to a strip of burlap, as shown in the detail shot below.

"Postcards from the Scrap Heap", Joanne Young, detail

Dianne Gibson's "Strata" was shown in the wonderful "Pentimento" show, at the O'Connor McLeod Hanna building in Oakville. Each of these cloth squares was wrapped around what appeared to be foam core, then affixed to a square, black ceramic tile. The tiles were mounted on strips in groups of three, and were available for sale as a unit of three, or as a grouping of twelve. Very appealing.

"Strata", Dianne Gibson

Also in the "Pentimento" show, this work by Maggie Vanderweit is composed of nine smaller squares, stitched together to form a cohesive whole. It is made of cotton and foil, and is both hand- and machine-stitched.

"Totem Graffiti", Maggie Vanderweit
Quoting from the show's posted statement:

"Pentimento is a term used to describe how painters change their ideas during the process of making art, often switching the subject matter and painting over the original idea. The layers of underpainting remain but are hidden beneath the surface.

"Connections artists have taken this theme and built up layers of fibres, thread, stitching, paint, dyes and other materials.Then the surfaces have been altered or peeled away to create a visual erosion. The image behind the colors and textures reveals its own story."

The owners of this building are to be applauded for the way they have opened up the hallways of their office building for the exhibition of local art. They have invested in hanging hardware and lighting to allow for a very professional display, with all the work shown to its best advantage. I think this is a fine way to "humanize" a commercial enterprise, and integrate it into the community.

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