Geneviéve Attinger's piece, "Le Cauchemard de l' Eau (la Quête)," will appear in the annual Fantastic Fibers show, opening April 6. Juror Rusty Freeman said the show will give viewers a picture of what's happening in the world of contemporary fiber arts.
Mary McCauly's "Shards: Self-Portrait as Pottery" was selected to appear in this year's Fantastic Fibers show at the Yeiser Art Center, 200 Broadway, this April. The work of artists from 20 states in the United States, as well as Canada, Egypt, France, Israel, South Korea, Taiwan, The Netherlands, and the United Kingdom, will appear in the annual exhibition.
Sara Renzulli's "Needle Felted Wire Hare" will appear in the 2013 Fantastic Fibers exhibition at the Yeiser Art Center. The 54 pieces in the show were selected from more than 700 national and international submissions.
With more than 700 entries in the 2013 Fantastic Fibers exhibition, the selection process for the show proved painful for juror Rusty Freeman.
“It’s brutal to go through that much work,” said Freeman, director of visual arts at Cedarhurst Center for the Arts in Mount Vernon, Ill. “Much of it was excellent, and so it really becomes a quite serious decision for any juror.”
Freeman managed to winnow the fiber art submissions to 54, which will be on display at the Yeiser Art Center, 200 Broadway, beginning April 6.
The juror said he selected a diverse mix of quality art that reflected the breadth of today’s fiber art. He looked for pieces that showed the artists’ awareness of current events and the tradition of fiber arts, but emphasized that his selection process couldn’t be boiled down to a simple formula.
“It’s a very intuitive process, and sort of a gut response,” he said.
Freeman expects that the average viewer will be impressed by the possibilities of expression to be found in fabric. He challenged Paducahans to visit the Yeiser and see for themselves what themes and trends are prevalent among the works.
“(The show) will give you an idea of what’s happening in the art world that I guarantee will jazz you up,” he said.
The show includes work from two local artists, Judeen Theis and Lily Liu, who show both an understanding of traditional fiber art forms and a desire to take the medium further.
Theis and Liu began working with fiber as children, they said, and their familiarity with the medium and its traditions can be seen in the art they make today.
Theis said she was inspired by the tie-dyeing trend of the 1960s when she made her accepted entry. The artist tied more than a thousand marbles into a piece of fabric, which she then boiled. The end result was a piece with a bubbly texture.
“I like to learn,” she said. “What comes out in the end may not be at all what I was starting out with. ... I think anybody who experiments around with things will find this a very interesting piece.”
Liu applied a traditional knitting technique to a modern material — fishing line — to create wearable art. The fishing line is heat-set into a necklace shape and embellished with beads and a pendant.
“I want to finish the piece so it’s playful and joyful for people who want to purchase and wear it,” Liu said. “It’s just another way of translating this captured moment of joy to the viewer.”
Both artists said they were thrilled to be accepted into Fantastic Fibers.
“It’s ... the leading edge of fiber manipulation,” Theis said. “I’m sure they’re going to have some quilts in there, but my guess is that they’re going to be very artistic looking.”
Contact Laurel Black, a Paducah Sun staff writer, at 270-575-8641 or follow @LaurelFBlack on Twitter.
Want to go?
What: Fantastic Fibers opening reception.
When: 5 to 7 p.m. Saturday, April 6.
Where: The Yeiser Art Center, 200 Broadway.
The show will run through May 4.