Tuesday, March 31, 2015

We are excited to have DIANNE GIBSON from Fonthill, ON as our visiting Guest Instructor for the Weekend of May 22-24th, 2015...

We welcome Dianne back to FIBREWORKS after a few years and know you will be so pleased to hear all about her new work. Dianne has been busy with CONNECTIONS Group exhibitions and is assisting with the ongoing planning for the 2016 launch of the traveling exhibition with THREADWORKS.

Dianne GibsonDuring her visit with us in Kingston, Dianne will share her MIXED MEDIA ASSEMBLAGES workshop with those who have registered for their seats in this exciting hands on and creative Textile Design Workshop weekend.

With a passion for textures and a fascination with experimentation, assemblages of many fibres and textural elements are major influences on her art. She is recognized for the large scale project she organized for the Atrium of the Niagara Regional Headquarters, including her own 24' permanent installation. 

Dianne is drawn to the juxtaposition of hard-edged materials combined with the softer qualities of fibres. She consciously looks for unique combinations of materials to construct the textured surfaces that fascinate her. She says, “It’s a wonderful excuse to collect an endless array of tools and treasures, to play with.” Her students will enjoy working with her to develop their own stunning, small assemblages during their weekend with Dianne.

Those who know Dianne describe her work as stunning, and always perfectly suited to large scale exhibition space. The piece below, Undulations, was a show stopper at the Art Gallery of Burlington this past fall, hung alongside her beautiful Waterfall piece which drew many complements from the FIBRE CONTENT Exhibition's visitors.

Artist's Statement

I was taught to use a sewing machine when I was very young, but becoming a textile - mixed media artist has been a 40-year journey.

I have a passion for rich textures. Distressed papers, torched metals, abaca fibre, wood and wire have all found their way into my work. I feel drawn to the juxtaposition of these hard-edged materials, against the softer qualities of cloth and threads. I enjoy challenging the expectations of traditional textile work and am happiest when I'm experimenting with new techniques.

"I believe that art is not determined by the medium an artist uses, but how they use that medium." 



Detail, WATERFALL, Threadworks Exhibition 


Some of the “textural” possibilities  include the use of multitudes of various fabrics, papers, gauze, tulle, lace, foils, abaca or wood fibres, metal shim, wires, threads, yarns, desiccated leaves, sticks, bark, etc.

Dianne has assembled for each of the Workshop students a "Materials Bag" ($35 fee payable to the Instructor) including a selection of these types of hard to find fabrics and bits of wonderful assemblage bits. Needless to say this will be a terrific way to add to our workshop stash bits the very special fabrics and materials we do not have here in Kingston. Many thanks to Dianne.....

During the two days together in the classroom, experimentation and creating many small works can and will happen, perhaps leading to the idea for one larger, Gallery-ready piece when you return to your home studio.

Please consider marking your calendar now and plan on spending the May 22-24th, 2015 weekend in the classroom at St. Lawrence College in Kingston, ON as you study technique, design, stitch and critique with Dianne and our Workshop students.

Registration information can be found along with all of the details about Dianne's workshop weekend on the right sidebar here at the FIBREWORKS BLOG. Hoping you will join us
and plan to enjoy a very creative weekend of fibre play!

Monday, March 30, 2015

SPRING 2015 Weekend Workshops Series now Registering... Hoping YOU will come along and spend time with HOLLY DEAN and DIANNE GIBSON, truly amazing Canadian Fibre Arts professsionals!

Today, a blogger's didactic.... on the state of the fibre arts in our neighborhood and beyond! Your thoughts?

A few years ago, dear friend and forever mentor, HILARY SCANLON, passed the candle to me as FIBREWORKS Coordinator, asking that I carry on her 33 year commitment to delivering Creative Workshops to friends near and far who were committed to the Fibre Arts. Hilary had spent the best years of her life (after raising her children and standing beside her husband through his education and working career) building a small business which she so fondly called FIBREWORKS Kingston.

In 1979, while she was teaching at St. Lawrence College and creating the most beautiful fibre art pieces herself, Hilary committed to not only share her skills with others, but to bring the very best of the best Instructors in Textile Art - the history, diversity and technique to Kingston and provide a venue where their skills, shared through a workshops format could be available for like-minded arts enthusiasts throughout Southern Ontario. In all of her 33 years as Fibreworks Coordinator, Hilary ensured that the FIBREWORKS classrooms were filled with creative fun, exciting Instructor-led technique demonstration and inspiration for the students who attended the Workshops Series.

Starting in 1997, I was very proud to assist Hilary as a classroom assistant, Registrar and helpful friend in fibre until 2008. I stepped out of the team with Hilary's blessing and Donna Hamilton stepped in until the end of the 2012 season, with my goal being to devote time to my own art work and teaching at St. Lawrence College as a Professor in the Textile Design Program... only one of three in all of Canada. Several years have passed since the candle passed as FIBREWORKS COORDINATOR  to me in 2013, and I am still as excited to bring our area and distance Canadian artists opportunities to study with wonderfully multi-talented Guest Instructors, and have the chance to learn the new techniques that are supporting the Textile Arts in Canada today as I was nearly eighteen years ago....

We have two truly amazing artists visiting with us this spring - HOLLY DEAN from Merrickville, ON and DIANNE GIBSON of Fonthill, ON - both well recognized exhibition artists and designers. Both are active in the arts community and provide not only sharing experiences in their studios and beyond, but are leaders in the arts fields through the exhibition art they share with the world. The workshops will run this spring and the small numbers of student participants will be afforded the wonders of study with these two Master Artists, and I will be there to observe the wonder and excitement as new art work evolves...the role continues. 

For me... the commitment to FIBREWORKS is serious and a labour of love. We would really love to have you join us and spend time with these two beautiful and talented women artists.... do please make time to check them out! 

Holly Dean's website:  https://www.HollyDean.com

Dianne's Artist page at http://www.Connectionsfibreartsists.com

So, I decided today to use this forum to speak out...sharing the only thing that is troubling me about the role I serve in as your friend in the arts and Coordinator for FIBREWORKS Kingston. There is really a changing dimension in the communities of artists I support and serve. On one hand I understand it - but who is going to carry on the traditions and joy of sharing art in textile if we can't support the new ones walking into the field by encouraging them to participate and providing the venues for their learning? While years ago, we were a strong network and partnership of friends and colleagues in the arts, so many of our artist friends have decided to step back, to pull in... to work on their own once again as so many others did in the distant past. 

Workshop interest and enrollment has dropped off, not only for FIBREWORKS, but we are seeing/hearing about it indeed all around the globe - in Guilds and Shops, at Retreats, online, and both at the national and international level . This can be attributed partly to the financial constraints many of us are feeling as we move from the working world of the adult partners in our homes, to suddenly feeling the impact of fixed incomes in retirement years... it just costs more to be a homeowner and support a family. But the changes are also attributable to the fact that many of our artists friends are now finding they are seemingly more content to work at home in their studios, and to share in smaller, more intimate settings, choosing to be with just their closest friends and sharing skills with each other at invitation only in-studio stitch days. 

I fully understand, as this is a place I too have settled into...no longer bringing in a "working wage", and wanting to have the time to relax, with needle in hand, and stitch while enjoying the quietude in my home or with friends. This conflicts strongly with my goal of supporting FIBREWORKS in the Coordinator's role, and the commitments I have made to my quilting Guild(s), the new roles I have taken on with The Tett Centre Board of Directors and with my new friends at the Kingston Handloom Weavers and Spinners Guild.  I really cherish time with  my new friends in the Connections Fibre Artists Group and with my long time colleagues in fibre art, the members of the Kingston Fibre Artists. I do enjoy sharing what I know and especially watching my students grow, so I will stay on at St. Lawrence College as long as  there are students to share with and strive to encourage area artists to continue to support our Textile Design Program. I am a proud and honoured teaching partner and supporter of those who have stepped out of our classrooms -like DENISE SOKOLSKY, a graduate of the Textile Design Program at SLC, and who has moved on in the arts, and is now preparing her Thesis for her Masters in Fine Arts - Textiles at UMass Boston... how much prouder could an Instructor be?

So I would love to hear from you - how do you see the future of the Fibre Arts in Canada? In your towns and cities? What role do you play and what do you need to see your involvement in the Arts continue to evolve and be recognized? Please do keep the lines of communication open - be a part f the dialogue and don't forget to share your skills with friends - old and new.

And if you have time, come join us at the Spring FIBREWORKS workshops... all the details are here at www.fibreworkskingston.blogspot.ca (on the right sidebar). Come PLAY!


Thursday, March 12, 2015

HOLLY DEAN arriving for THE MUSE JOURNAL Workshop April 17-19th at St. Lawrence College, Kingston. COME - Create your own personal journal!

Creating Muse Journals
Holly created this beautiful MUSE JOURNAL, now in the collection of Bethany Garner

Holly Dean expresses her delight in beauty through her art. While contemporary in style, her mixed media paintings, book art and altered images embody an age-old quality: a connection to the arthurian mythology and love of nature that shapes her life. Organic layers of texture and rich colour conceal and reveal fluid lines of calligraphy and shapely letter forms. Holly’s use of words in her art awakens a very personal connection with each piece.



Holly's Fabulous Workshops series, held in her "gothic" studio in Merrickville are a smash hit. She loves to share her knowledge while encouraging all participants to experiment and grow. 

For the future, you can treat yourself to one or more of these workshops and experience the magic of Holly's creative world. Make more art and come away inspired!

For NOW....

YOU will be lucky enough, if you register very soon, to be able to take part in this wonderful workshop with Holly as your Instructor during our FIBREWORKS KINGSTON Weekend Workshop to be held on  the weekend of April 17th-19th at St. Lawrence College.

More details are available for you here on the Workshop #3 Page here at the blog on the right sidebar.

Don't wait - registration is limited...
The Fee is $150.00 and we will be in Room 00060, Lower Level, Green Wing from 9:30 – 4 pm Saturday and Sunday. Holly’s Trunk Show and Lecture will be in Room 12040 on Friday evening, April 17th fro 7-9 pm

Hoping you can join us…

Please print your Registration Form at www.FIBREWORKSKINGSTON.blogspot.ca (on the sight sidebar)


Sunday, March 8, 2015

SAQA's 25th Anniversary Traveling Trunk Show E is in Ontario now... would you like to see the quilts?

Water Tower#4, Heather Dubreuil
SAQA Central Member
Sumac Song, Joyce McKinnon
SAQA Central Member

We are pleased to announce that the SAQA 25th Anniversary Trunk Show, TRUNK E, is in the Ottawa area until March 31, 2015. The trunk will be at the Art Gallery of Burlington for the SAQA Central Canada Regional Meeting scheduled for Sunday, April 12, 2015.The Trunk will remain in Burlington and area until June 1st. A schedule has been booked with a number of local Guilds and Fibre Arts Groups.
You may view the entire collection of 7" x 10" art quilts that are included in the Trunk E exhibition HERE . Each is a stunning small art quilt, matted and packaged in a clear envelope to protect it as it travels. Each quilt has it's Artist Statement and details in the envelope on the back to be read and enjoyed by the exhibition viewers. This is your chance to bring an interactive art quilt exhibition to share with your group of fibre art friends.
Each of the small quilts was created especially for the 25th Anniversary Exhibition in 2014, and the 470 quilts donated were divided into 8 traveling Trunk Shows. They will travel the world until 2017, when they will be returned to the artists. 50 Quilts were selected from the total Exhibition to become a permanent collection at the National Quilt Museum  Paducah, Kentucky.
In June, the Trunk will move to Kingston for it's first display opportunity on June 3rd. The trunk will be available in Kingston and surrounding area for the summer, with a number of visits planned with  area arts/community groups and educational facilities where visitors will be able to see the 51 pieces of art through the summer. We hope to have the exhibit at the Mississippi Valley Textile Museum in Almonte with the Kingston Fibre Artists Exhibition from July 28-September 5th.
Trunk Show E is available to your group for a visit and we encourage you to contact our SAQA Central Canada Co-Representatives to arrange a visit to your Guild or group of friends.
Copper Water, Ellie Flaherty
Swimming Upstream, Bonnie Smith


Please feel free to contact either Dwayne Wanner or Bethany Garner, SAQA Co-Reps, for more information and to arrange a visit to your Guild or Group.

Bethany: garner@kingston.net
Dwayne: DWanner@sympatico.ca

Friday, March 6, 2015

Bethany Garner and several artist friends in Canada will have their work in 1000 QUILT INSPIRATIONS coming soon to your favourite book seller...

A Quarry Book by Sandra Sider

This new book is a tribute to the many ART QUILT makers around the world.

Dr. Sandra Sider sought submissions in 2014 for a spot in the new book and many quilters quickly responded. The jury selected the featured artists along with Dr. Sider. Sider is a New York quilt artist and independent curator, who has published articles and reviews concerning fiber art and other aspects of visual culture for three decades. Her graduate degrees include an M.A. in art history from the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University. She was President of Studio Art Quilt Associates (2010-2013), and is currently Curator for the Texas Quilt Museum.
A number of Canadian artists including our SAQA Central Canada friends have work in the new book due to be distributed mid-March 2015.  If all of the other artists will let me know, I will post all of the names...  Here are a few I know as of today:

Great to see our SAQA Canadian Artists featured in all of these great publications.
Fibreworks Kingston Coordinator