My initial experiences
with weaving systems came in college studio courses at the graduate
level. Technique was the major focus of instruction and was expressed
by the construction of a sampler of patterned fabrics felling no
spiritual contact with the medium until I began pursuing more personal
ideas, surfaces and forms. The work which resulted produced convinced
me that weaving would add an element of expression to my ideas which
would become very important to my development as a visual artist.
Throughout my early efforts to learn more concerning the fiber arts
as a new movement in the visual arts, and achieving my M.A. and
M.F.A. degrees, I continued to employ the floor loom for construction
of art fabrics for my three dimensional forms. Researching biologically
related forms and folklore ritual forms
and produced sculpture related to that imagery. Some early creations
were recycled in an effort to push further the relationship of my
ideas as they were being formed.
Some ideas from my graduate experiences were carried over and developed
as I began my career as an educator at the college level. Flamboyant
qualities created by using colorful and reflective materials were
used in sculptures representing ESCAPE ROUTES composed of ladders
ascending into clouds. This desire to relate the transformations
found in the sky was soon refined an abstracted. A NEA Craftsmen
Fellowship funded my first machine sewn series, SKYGRIDS,
from vinyl, polyethylene plastic, millinery veiling, ribbons, braids,
threads, and paint. Quilting transparent layers of materials became
the dominant technique in which the interior of the quilted fabric
became the major visual aesthetic concern. Strips of photo-screened
vinyl were later added and interlacing were now incorporated into
the development of my imagery.
In 1974 a major move to the University of Kentucky provided me with
a spacious studio, research time and excellent facilities for teaching
and developing my artistic expression. As an artist I firmly believe
in the philosophy that work produces results. The evolution of my
personal style is shaped by my choice of visual concerns where growth
is enhanced by variation and change. My interest in using exotic
materials, Mylar, Lurex, Diffraction Grating and other high tech
products, has never swayed and the surfaces created by their use
continues to excite me. My explorations have produced a variety
of aesthetic qualities of which reflections emitted from the surfaces
of my forms continue to provide an added dimension to my creations.
My research for design and content has included pattern
in various forms, spatial depth
through shape, color and line, monumental
scale achieved through modular formats and by creating and recycling
art fabrics which are lightweight, easily installed and transported.
Other issues incorporate shape variation
from traditional to dynamically more personal forms, combining representation
with abstraction, exploring alternative image making processes
as collage and photocopy transfers
on acetate, paper, using fabric, machine stitching to enhance the
design's texture, color, or structure, and the introduction of kinetic
elements using motorized armatures.
Now I look forward to continued years of art making, teaching and
sharing my ideas and creations with students, colleagues, other
artists and the public.