December 22, 2011

A New Textile: "Chevrons"

Chevrons, hand dyed wool on linen, 11 x 10 inches.

With this piece I've gone back to playing with pattern, as I've done with two previous textiles, which you can see here and here. For years my primary inspiration for my hooked wool work has been minimalist abstraction, but now I am drawn to other kinds of visual expression. With pattern I am going back to the decorative arts, back to the design of everyday things. There is a beauty and energy in repetition that is very engaging. Thirty or so years ago there was a loose group of painters in a "Pattern and Decoration" movement, which also looked beyond the history of painting for ideas.

When I was thinking about the color I'd use for the angled bands of color, I went to this photo of a shelf mushroom that I took during the fall. I love its deep purples, along with the oranges and greens melting together into a purply brown. I did not even try to get close to those colors, instead using them as a jumping off point, keeping my colors dark and fairly close in value. As you can see in the detail below, the purple is of a reddish hue, so I think it holds its own alongside the warm earthy red; the green is more vibrant than the other colors so its movement across the surface is noted, shining dimly amid the deep hues of autumn.


  1. You have a really clear sense of color and use it well. I really enjoy your writing because you always make a great case for how you translate the world into abstractions. If you were to write a book (have you already?) it would serve both makers of art as well as help to introduce a general audience into how to "see." This post is a treat.

  2. I love the colors of the shelf fungus. You have brought that feel into your textile beautifully.

  3. Gorgeous ! You've used your inspiration perfectly .