The current members' exhibition at the Folk Art Center, Southern Highland Craft Guild, is entitled New Traditions: Wearable Art. The exhibition will be on display until January 15, 2011. If you're anywhere near the Asheville, NC area, this is definitely worth a visit. Full disclosure: I have a piece in the exhibit.
We drove to Asheville Tuesday to see the show. Unfortunately photography is not allowed in the galleries, so I'll have to restrict myself to a brief written description of some of my favorite pieces.
Many textile media are featured in the show, and it is no surprise that the woven works were among my favorites. Eileen Hallman's Red Jacket, with structural pleating of woven shibori, was a standout in red. Another understated but beautifully executed woven shibori, of the dyed variety, was Neal Howard's Abode (Plaza Jacket).
There were many interesting jewelry entries, which I'll leave to others to describe to you, except for one, a felted piece. Breanna Rockstad-Kincaid's Bobble Neckpiece of felted merino was a bold sculptural statement but looked like it would be very comfortable on the body. And what colors!
The woven pieces I found most appealing were of very simple weave structures, brilliantly realized. Kathie Roig's Ruby Red Wrap was an elegant 4-shaft huck lace interpretation in many shades of red, and Pam Howard's Mountain Waters shawl in cotton, silk, & wool plain weave with differential shrinkage was a standout in blues—I just longed to run my hands over it, but resisted. Another intriguing woven entry was Suzanne Gernandt's One Size Fits All, a rectangular wall hanging of linen warp and a weft of commercial dress patterns cut into strips and compressed. The weave structure was a sophisticated block pattern, and the effect was of a bast-fibered cloth, with the little printed blips dotting randomly. I just couldn't take my eyes off this one.
In the knitted department a standout was Mary Nichols's Hearts and Diamonds, an entrelac and lace shawl of super-fine handspun, hand-dyed merino & silk and beads.
A collaboration between Linda MacMichael and Tim Clar, Tesoro, featured an embroidered purse with bands of kumihimo woven braids executed on a Maru Dai with 36 bobbins. These jewel-like bands definitely rewarded an up-close viewing.
There's lots more good stuff in this show. Did I mention Ruthie Cohen's Medieval Bikini fashioned entirely of sterling silver wire chainmaille? So hurry on up (or over) to Asheville to see the show. You'll love it.
And let me share a few pictures of the rest of my day in the mountains. The autumn color display is a bit past its peak, but still beautiful.
And here's a picture of a little mountain cemetery we visited just as the sun was going down.