Tuesday, November 5, 2013


The 10th unjuried small format tapestry exhibit is coming up. Unjuried means that everyone who enters gets in. Pretty good odds eh? There will also be a printed catalog, and everyone who enters will receive a complimentary copy.

Here are 3 catalogs from previous exhibits. 

"UNTITLED/UNJURIED: small format tapestry 2014" is sponsored by the American Tapestry Alliance, and will be at the University of Rhode Island Providence Campus Gallery from July 8 - August 8, 2014.  The opening reception will be on Thursday, July 17th, 2014, as part of Gallery Night Providence.

The exhibit will be up during Convergence (the giant weaving convention), and the gallery is only a few blocks from the Providence Convention Center, so anyone attending the convention will easily be able to drop in.

Here's how it works:

1. Before January 31, 2014, send in your entry form and fee. You can enter online or print and mail the form, and payment can be by check, credit card or paypal.

2. Weave the tapestry, and make sure it arrives by March 31, 2014.

I have entered this show many times, and it's always fun. Here is a tapestry I entered in a past show.

Experimentation is encouraged. There are tapestry celebrities, there are complete novices, and everything between; they are all in this show together, and all in the printed catalog together (forever!). It's your chance for immortality.

Last time we had 200 tapestries! I hope we can beat that number in 2014.

Information, and entry forms are on the ATA website, here.

Thursday, September 26, 2013


5th Annual Tour
October 19th and 20th

Check the website for details, download a map, or pick up a brochure at any of our sponsors.

Here's a recently finished tapestry, and then some photos from last year's tour. 

Monday, July 1, 2013

Tapestry Diary 2013, Halfway Done

I finished the May/June section of the 2013 Tapestry Diary last week, and now I have to cut it off and rewarp the loom for the second half of the year. That feels like a real milestone, much more so than just living for 6 months.

The second half of the year has arrived, and I am excited about it.

The theme is subtlety, not something I consider my forte, and I have been trying to keep my colors very soft and the combinations low contrast. (I think this photo may be a bit darker and more contrasty than the real thing).

I have gradually added little changes, like stripes and shading. I am getting a bit bored now, so it's time to do something a little more different in July, but, although I have some ideas, I won't be sure what that is until I do it. That's the way it works, when I'm weaving the days, it's all about being in the moment.

This year I am only weaving the diary 5 days a week. That seems reasonable since most people work a 5 day week, and that gives me a little leeway if I have to miss a day for some reason.

(On the right is the month of June, with a more accurate representation of the colors.)

I am weaving in 2 month sections, and the first 2 sections were each 8 weeks, but then, surprise surprise, May/June was 9 weeks!

Once I thought about it I realized OF COURSE! Otherwise we'd only have 48 weeks in the year. I was a little worried that I would not have enough warp, but in the end I did.

Apparently I don't have photos of each full section, but here are some that were almost finished.

Above is most of March/April, and below is most of January/February. You can tell which month it is by the number.

(NOTE: click on an image to see it larger)

For more about my tapestry diaries:

A New Year, A New Tapestry Diary

Tapestry Diaries Old and New

Here's a link to Tommye Scanlin's blog, where she writes about her 5 years of weaving tapestry diaries.

She introduced me to this idea, and got me started on this project, or perhaps it's more of a lifestyle!

Thanks Tommye!

Monday, May 20, 2013

"a piece of TWiNE"

is at Imagine Gallery in Northampton, Massachusetts until June 1. This is an exhibit of tapestries by members of Tapestry Weavers in New England.

(ABOVE: my tapestries on the left, Suzanne Pretty's tapestries on the right, at the reception)

There was a lovely reception on gallery night, May 10, and it was very well attended. There are photos of the exhibit on the TWiNE blog, and also on the gallery's blog (where you can also find information about hours etc, in case you plan to visit). It will be up until June 1.

Three of my Chaos tapestries are included, here they are:

On the Edge of Chaos, 22 x 24"

Chaotic Fragments: Part 1, 10 x 10"

Chaotic Fragments: Part 2, 10 x 10"

Friday, April 5, 2013

Trees in the Snow

I finally finished this small tapestry of trees in the snow.  I wove it with very thin weft, and didn't realize what I was doing until it was too late to change.
So it took way longer than necessary, and I was kind of discouraged along the way.  I was inspired by the trees in Goddard Park, in February 2011, when we had a lot of snow.

The black trees sillhoutted against the white snow made such interesting patterns.   I took a ton of photos and did some drawings from the photos.

Then I made photocopies to enlarge the drawings for tapestry cartoons.   I haven't figured out a good title for these tapestries, or for the series...."Trees" just seems too dull.

I called the first one "Tree Study."   It was finished about a year ago, and went to  Long Beach, for the Pacific Portals exhibit.

I have been taking tree pictures ever since, and hope to weave more of them
 I applied some kind of photoshop filter to this one. I kind of like it.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Fiber Art in New Bedford

On Saturday, March 2, I attended a meeting of the Surface Design Association, Massachusetts/RI chapter meeting at Artworks in New Bedford.  It was well attended, and I enjoyed meeting about 15 fiber artists, working in many different fiber media.

After the meeting we had a sneak preview of the exhibition in the Artworks Gallery, then walked a few blocks to the New Bedford Art Museum to see Elin Noble: Color Alchemy.

Unfortunately photography was not allowed at the museum, but I'd just like to say that her hand dyed fabrics glowed with an inner light, like stained glass.

The exhibit at Artworks is "Above the Din: Unstructured Conversations."

The artists are Adrienne Sloane, Nathalie Miebach, Ruth Marshall, Nancy Crasco and Beatrice Coron.  Four of the artists participated in an artist panel at the museum, along with Elin Noble.

Nathalie Miebach uses scientific data,  as the basis for her creations. She hopes to lure viewers into complexity through play, using the language of toys. Below- A Duet of Blizzards - Wood, Paper, Rope, Data.

The artist writes

"This score is written for 2 musicians. In this score, weather data (barometric pressure, temperature, dew point and wind) of two different blizzards, in December 2007 and February 1978 are translated. Both storm systems caused havoc on roadways in New England as people tried to leave the city, but found themselves grid-locked on highways as the snow slowly buried them."

Beatrice Coron works with cut Tyvek. Below: On the Nile (Detail)

I love the expressive human (and animal) figures, and the shadows that add another dimension to this piece.

Nancy Crasco is concerned with climate change. Her work shows that the earth is still beautiful, and at the same time, it provokes viewers to ask questions. "Weed War."  (below) Silk Organza, printed with gelatin plate process, hand painted and machine embroidered.

Ruth Marshall worked at the Bronx Zoo (home of the Wildlife Conservation Society) for 14 years, where she developed a passion for protecting endangered species. Using actual animal pelts from the zoo's archives, she charts the patterns to create her handknitted "pelts."  Below - #2 Ocelot
 Adrienne Sloane is a sculptor who says she has fallen into a knitting hole and can't get out.  Her "Walking on Eggshells," (below) is knitted with wire. The organic shapes are beautiful, and once again, I found myself admiring the shadows.
"A Nation Divided," (below) is a commentary on the current dysfunction in our government. Sloane had postcards of this piece printed up, and mailed one to each member of congress.

The Artworks show is up til April 3, and Elin Noble's show is up til April 28. If you're going to New Bedford, make sure you visit the Whaling Museum.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

A New Year, A New Tapestry Diary

Four weeks into my 2013 tapestry diary. This one is quite different from last year. (see previous post)

#1  Squares instead of parallelograms

#2  Five days a week, like a regular work week! That gives me weekends off, or it gives me weekends to make up for week days that I have to take off.

#3  Instead of weaving a whole square every day, I weave one fifth of each square every day....that's because they are interlocked, and can't be woven separately.

(See how there is no slit between the squares? That's because the wefts are interlocked every time they turn around)

#4 Instead of exploring black and white with bits of color, I am exploring colors that have very low contrast. This is something new for me. How uncontrasty can I go and still see the difference between two squares? I'm using an off white wool that has streaks of grey and brown in it, and also blending some whites, beiges, grays and for this month, some lavender.

#5 Since I am weaving whole weeks, then do the months matter? Will I change colors each month? Will I slightly alter the pattern, break up the squares the way I broke up the parallelograms last year? I guess I will find out when I get to February!

 Here are the first 4 weeks of 2013.  I wove the number 1 to indicate January, but I'm not sure if I want to pay any attention to the months this year....it could be just about the weeks. Stay tuned to see how it turns out!

Friday, January 4, 2013

Tapestry Diaries Old and New

Weaving a tapestry diary has given new meaning to the New Years holiday.  Instead of making a resolution that I feel I SHOULD do, I have a plan for what I WANT to do, and actually WILL do for the entire year.

I got the idea from Tommye Scanlin, and my first tapestry diary was in 2010 (left). It amazes me how 365 very small daily entries can add up to something so substantial!

I decided to weave a row of 7 parallelograms each week, because with that shape, you don't end up with a slit between each day like you would if you wove a square. I had woven some small tapestries like this in the past, just as playful exercises, and they came from my habit of using lazy lines.

Lazy lines occur when you break a solid area of color into smaller diagonal areas, but because all the parts are the same color, it's very subtle, as you can see in this image (right).

In my parallelogram tapestries....WAIT!
I am really tired of typing that word, even though I'm proud that I can now spell it....can I just call them p-grams from now on?  OK!

In my p-gram tapestries I wove a stripe of diagonal shapes all the way across for about an inch, then started a new stripe in different colors. Some of the parallelograms also include thin stripes.

My 2010 tapestry diary was based on this design.

One of the benefits of my tapestry diary is that I make rules, and that takes away the intimidation and uncertainty that can keep me away from my studio, allowing me to make a really simple choice each day. It's a great way to get myself into the studio.

So my rules for 2010 were:
1. Choose a color scheme for each month
2. Change direction each month
3. Weave every day, unless I can't
4. If I miss a day or more, make it up later
5. When I feel like it, weave an image or text relating to special occasions
6. I make the rules, so I can change them or break them

Along with various birthdays and other events that I wove, here I am in my kayak from May 2010!

Every day, I would sit at the loom and weave what I felt like weaving, without over-thinking it. After all, if I didn't like that one small p-gram, it was only one of 365, so no big deal.

It became a daily weaving practice that was all about the process and not about the product. I enjoyed it so much that I remember, near the end of a day that was not going well, I suddenly realized I had not yet woven my diary, and it made me so happy to know I had that to look forward to.

Detail of August and September 2011 (below) 
NOTE: click on any photo for larger image

As the year went on, I realized that the repetition, and yes, boredom, of weaving the same thing every day drove me to experiment and explore, to seek out challenges, so the final product is a treasure trove of new ideas for future reference. As a mother, I always felt that boredom was necessary to encourage children to develop their creativity, and I can see that it works for adults too.

September and October 2010 (below)
At the end of 2010, I didn't want to do another tapestry diary right away, so I did a sketch diary instead. That only lasted about 5 months, as I found it more difficult than the tapestry diary, but it was really worthwhile. I drew a lot of moon snail shells. Read about it here.

For my 2012 Tapestry Diary,  I used the same basic rules, but I made my p-grams steeper (by turning on the same warp twice instead of once), I used thicker yarns, and instead of noting special dates, I had a mission: to explore adding color to the black and white which I have been using so much in my recent tapestries.

I used a loom that could only fit enough warp for 6 months, so I had to cut off and restart on July 1. At that point, I decided to weave the 2nd and 3rd quarters of the year as separate pieces, because, as a finished tapestry I prefer that shape, and because I was starting to love the way they looked, and to see them as possible tapestries for exhibition. So much for process vs. product!

That happened because, once again getting bored weaving the same shape every day, I discovered that I could break my p-grams into 2 matching triangles, or into 3 triangles...and from there the shapes morphed into waves, and leaves and half moons.

So on New Years Eve, I wove the last p-gram of 2012, then I wove the hem, and cut the last 2 quarters of the year off the loom.

On New Years Day I spent most of the day putting on my new warp, and weaving the hem and weaving the first day of 2013.

As much as I love the way the 2012 diary turned out, 2013 is going in a new direction because the diary has to be about exploring new territory!

Who knows where it will take me!

Here are some links to previous blog posts about my tapestry diaries:

Fall 2012

May 2012 with links to earlier posts

December 2011 with links to 2010 Diary