A rich feast of color radiating from a large, handwoven tapestry of alpaca wool; an elegant choker necklace delicately twined and forged with 18K and 22K gold; a cosmic quilt, woven from mylar and holographic film; a Whisker Organ made of real cat whiskers, which play lovely organ music when stroked-these are just a few of the remarkable and challenging pieces you'll find in the Fuller Craft Museum
's new fiber exhibition.
Game Changers: Fiber Art Masters and Innovators are artists, past and present, who continuously revisit traditional techniques and materials while developing revolutionary approaches in the realm of fiber art. Every work in the exhibition was chosen to showcase the individual practice of each invited artist. Some of these creators have been working in the public eye for decades, and some have produced pieces specific to the exhibit, making this their first museum showing. All of them epitomize the dynamism and fluidity of work in fiber. These artists thread humanity's oldest cultural impulses into the world of contemporary art.
Fiber artists are moving beyond a process-and-materials-dominated creative approach to a more expansive and idea-driven view. Certainly materials and fine technique in fiber art are fundamental to making great work. At the same time, many pieces featured here convey the artists' growing conviction that great art is driven primarily by creative vision. These shifts in perspective are sometimes subtle, sometimes disruptive.
Decidedly game-changing crossover works may be "non-fiber" materials such as steel, stone, glass, gold and other metals, nylon monofilament, and fruit peels. Other artists engage viewers through traditional techniques such as embroidery and tapestry-weaving to comment directly-sometimes uncomfortably-on social and technological experiences. One artist uses distinctive natural fibers that invite viewers to trigger electronic signals that create a musical experience.
Are all these works fiber art? They are. They represent a fundamental shift led by artists who work not only in threads and fabrics, but also in metaphor, in complex ideals of social justice, in urban sensibility, in the presence of electronic media, in the everlasting beauty of nature, and in humanity's fundamental relationship with art-making.
Artists featured in the exhibition include: Renie Breskin Adams, Olga de Amaral, Lucy Arai, Anastasia Azure, Linda Behar, Dorothy Gill Barnes, Mary Bero, Lanny Bergner, Nancy Moore Bess, Archie Brennan, John Cardin, Lia Cook, Randall Darwall, Eric & Martin Demaine, Carol Eckert, Catherine Ellis, Arline Fisch, John Garrett, Jan Hopkins, Mary Lee Hu, Lissa Hunter, Diane Itter, Michael James, Naomi Kobayashi, Nancy Koenigsberg, Alison Kotin, Gyongy Laky, Maximo Laura, Chunghie Lee, Kari Lonning, Ruben Marroquin, Amanda McCavour, John McQueen, Norma Minkowitz, Debora Muhl, Kait Rhoads, Lesley Richmond, Michael F. Rohde, Ed Rossbach, Arturo Alonzo Sandoval, Jane Sauer, Cynthia Schira, Warren Seelig, Kay Sekimachi, Carol Shinn, Adrienne Sloane, Pamela Studstill, Polly Adams Sutton, and Dawn Nichols Walden.