I went to see Material Cultures, a Fiber Arts installation, at BRIC House Brooklyn! Textile and Fashion lovers will enjoy the tribal-inspired garments by Laura Barbata. Crochet lovers will enjoy Xenobia Bailey’s mandalas. Embroidery and Painting lovers will enjoy Sophia Narrett’s hand-embroidered pastoral scenes. I especially loved the handwoven indigo-dyed textiles and prints featured above. The entire exhibit is a small collection but worth a visit if you’re a fiber fanatic looking for some fresh perspectives.
Here are some highlights of these beautiful fibery dreams.
Exercises on Health, Tapestry Weaving
Lucia Cuba, Lima, Peru/Brooklyn
Lucia Cuba’s cotton rope installation was also one of my favorites. I loved the heavy-gauge cotton rope woven into poncho-style and/or Chinese-inspired garments and the head gear. The macro-texture of the pieces made a beautiful intrinsic design. Modern, stylish, and inspired. It reminded me of Kanye West’s first fashion collection, Season 1 – Yeezy x Adidas. For better or worse…
Moon Lodge and Mandalas, Crochet Arts
Xenobia Bailey, Seattle, WA/New York City
Xenobia Bailey’s mesmerizing mandalas mix geometric spirals into whimsical designs. It reminds me of magic-eye or optical illusion pictures. Her Moon Lodge had a tribal-inspired design reminiscent of Tibetan-style patterns. Crocheted using yarn, Single Crochet, and mixed media.
Pastoral Scenes, Embroidery Arts
Sophia Narrett, Concord, MA/Brooklyn
These Pastoral Scenes are exquisitely painted using embroidery thread. I can almost feel the texture in the wood trellis, see the mounds of soft grass bend. Fine Art lovers will appreciate how the subjects evoke movement and mood, capture a moment in time. The detail is stunning.
Woven Paper Panels, Weaving Arts
Lorenzo Hurtado Segovia, Mexico/Los Angeles
These gorgeous graphic design inspired pieces are made of paper strips woven as if fabric. I loved the way they were displayed, some pieces were like stained glass. A cool twist was the back of the piece was not like the front of the piece. Both sides were completely different designs. They reminded me of a finely designed plastic market bag, like ones found in Chinatown or any third world country used for anything from carrying goods to market or cheap travel luggage. Boxy, durable, woven out of plastic strips, that zip at the top.
Material Cultures is a collaboration between Oak Knit Studios and BRIC House. The exhibit features eight contemporary artists showcasing such Fiber Arts as Weaving and Embroidery. Exploring the boundaries between High Art vs. Arts and Crafts, new ways to use classic techniques, and the very foundation of a fabric – its warp and weft. Or simply making Art with Craft.
Textile Arts are one of the oldest forms of human expression. Like food, it represents the fabric of its respective culture – its history, its identity, its nature. Rich, vibrant, singular. It tells stories, illustrates life, passes on traditions, and connects people. They hold a place in art history while remaining a fundamental part of human life. Beauty in form and function.
Oak Knit Studios is currently at the Textile Arts Center, Brooklyn where there is an open studio filled with goodies for fiber artists like loom rentals and classes!
BRIC House is located in the former Strand Theater in Brooklyn’s Cultural District. An airy modern space, it houses an Art Space, Media Center, Performance Space, and Artists Studios with live events and classes every month. It’s a bit like MoMA PS1 in Long Island City but on a smaller scale.
Material Cultures, Sept 7 – Oct 23
647 Fulton Street
Brooklyn, NY 11217