September 13, 2011

New Hooked Wool Drawings

2011 #31, hand dyed wool and egg tempera on linen, 13 x 13 inches.

Here is a new group of hooked wool drawings. I like to work on these in batches because the painting and hooking go rather quickly, while preparation and finishing take a while; it's more efficient for me to do several at once. When I first did the sketch for the image above, I was thinking of a satellite, as in a moon being spun off from its planet. Then I couldn't help but see a stuffed olive, or doughnut hole. With this imagery, how could this piece help but be a little humorous. I used colors that banished the olive idea, but did decide to paint the form to give it an illusion of volume.

2011 #32, hand dyed wool and egg tempera on linen, 13 x 12 inches.

With this piece, I liked the idea of one form breaking out of its boundary box while the others are contained within it.

2011 #33, hand dyed wool and egg tempera on linen, 14 x 11 inches.

When I first began this body of work, all the images were centered on the linen ground, which came out of my way of making sketches. In my last group, however, which you can see here, I tried something new: working across the entire surface, either filling it, as above, or leaving a dynamic empty center as in #34 below. Because I'm a representational painter, I do sometimes worry that I'll run out of ideas for the non-objective textile work, but it hasn't yet happened; opening up this drawing process helps in limbering up my mind and hand.

2011 #34, hand dyed wool and egg tempera on linen, 14 x 11 inches.


  1. You would make Anni Albers proud. Beautiful work, Altoon.

  2. these are lovely. the colors are great. reminds me of the Chinese vases at the Met.

  3. thanks so much, Connie and alicia. Two wonderful comparisons!

  4. I find humor and movement and dynamic tension in 31 & 32. 33 is not quite working for me, as if you need to push the imbalance more. 34 also good where the space is a player. I like these Altoon!

  5. thanks for the feedback, Julie. My idea in #33 was to scatter shapes and hope there was a rhythm produced, but maybe I could have pushed the tension more; I'll keep it in mind for the future.