In our tumultuous world, the ground seems to be constantly shifting under our feet. How do we shift in response to world events?
How do we see the world shifting around us? What has shifted in our lives? How do we seek balance? Members of Tapestry Weavers West were asked to reflect on these questions and the recent dramatic shifts in our lives to create work for this juried exhibition: SHIFT. The slow and thoughtful medium of tapestry weaving is well suited to such contemplative reflection.
Juror Christine Koppes, Curator at the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) San Francisco, selected 20 of the 51 pieces submitted for this exhibition. In her juror’s statement, Christine writes, “The tactility, softness, pliability, and complexity of fiber work condones slow and close looking – opening space for vulnerability between the viewer and artwork. Many of the pieces in this exhibition directly reflect on recent major events such as fires and environmental repercussions of global warming, the COVID-19 pandemic, political turmoil, and social uprising. The non-representational works capture the psychological spaces within these shifts, tapping into our collective conscious, shifts of mood, and altering perspectives. Some pieces selected pivot away from what we might expect from traditional tapestry work, including sculpture and forms extending beyond the usual rectangle.” The juror granted the American Tapestry Alliance Award for Excellence to Ama Wertz for her work Butterfly Effect (California Dogface), a finely crafted, sculptural tapestry layered on a KN95 mask.
Participating artists: Chelley BonDurant, Bobbi Chamberlain, Kate Colwell, Marcia Hanson Ellis, Janette Gross, Jennie Henderson, Stephanie Hoppe, Laura Kamian McDermott, Heather Larsen, Sarah Michael, Yonat Michaelov, Care Standley, Kathe Todd-Hooker, Sue Weil, Ama Wertz
SHIFT will be on view at Art Works Downtown, 1337 Fourth St, San Rafael CA 94901, from February 4 to March 19, 2022. Gallery hours are Thursday through Saturday 1pm – 8pm.
Tapestry Weavers West is a regional group of tapestry weavers founded at an informal gathering in 1985, and has grown to include over 100 members in the SF Bay Area, California, and beyond. TWW promotes the art of contemporary tapestry through its regular exhibitions, quarterly meetings, social media, and newsletters.
Image: Marcia Hanson Ellis, Bootleg Fire, 2021, 9″ x 12″, wool and cotton.