Since January, seventeen SAQA members have joined the ranks of Juried Artist Member. Some are names well known and others are emerging in the art quilt world. We thought a brief introduction would be a nice place to start. Then we can keep an eye on their progress!
Sandra Branjord: “In 2008 I began a love affair with art quilts. I began telling my stories with fabric and thread. Most of my quilts are about the empowerment of women in general and myself in particular. Through my quilts I tell the story of my authentic self. Quilts are my way of dealing with my feelings and I try to cast those feelings in a universal way. My wish is that the viewer is either deeply moved, or moved to smile.”
Phyllis Cullen: For Cullen, it’s all about the color. Her goal is to recreate the color and light and bring out the story and the soul of her subject whether she is painting on fabric, canvas or paper, or with fabric or paper, in mixed media and collages. She has shown, sold, and taught all over the world. She currently lives on the beautiful Hamakua coast of Hawaii’s Big Island.
Caryl Bryer Fallert-Gentry: Fallert-Gentry is internationally recognized for her award-winning fine-art quilts, which have appeared in hundreds of national and international exhibitions, collections, and publications. Honors include 100 Best Quilts of the 20th Century, Silver Star (lifetime achievement) Award, and selection as one of the thirty most influential quilt makers in the world. Caryl has lectured and taught in eleven countries around the world.
Julia Graber: Graber loves the challenge of taking an image, whether from a photograph, nature, or in her mind, and creating it with fabric and thread. Her work is representational and often minimizes detail.
“It brings me joy when viewers of my work are drawn in for a closer look. I’m encouraged when they study the piece and discover with delight that it is not just another quilt but an expressive and compelling piece of fiber art.”
Betty Hahn: “My work now is as much about painting as quilting. I use my domestic machine and my new frame mounted machine to add texture to my painted art. I sometimes quilt on the painted canvas, adding applique through the quilting process. I also have my paintings digitally printed on fabric and then over paint, applique and free motion stitch. Most of my work is intuitive, playing with color, line, shape and composition.”
Susan Heller: “I am fascinated by the many ways different cultures called upon nature and the spirit world to bring about good fortune, cure illness, render an abundant harvest or a successful hunt. Ritual masks imbued the wearer with the power of what the mask represented, or contained magical properties important to initiating the young or commemorating ancestors and local deities.”
Judy Kirpich: “My art is a mirror into my soul, and sometimes it has been somewhat dark. I work in a series and often come back to a subject matter over and over. I love the juxtaposition of spontaneity and precision. To get a composition to look free flowing and gestural demands great control and exactness. This is my holy grail and I still have not cracked that nut. But I continue to try. I do not applique or use any fusing whatsoever. All of my work is machine pieced and machine quilted…”
Brigitte Kopp: “ ‘How can I manipulate fabrics’- was the first question, I asked myself, when I started quilting. I commenced to experiment with the material developing my own techniques. Lines, structures, surface, colors, transparency – to highlight, to hide, to connect, to separate – to show what is behind, between the things – this are the intentions of my work. Sometimes my work is more graphic, sometimes more pictorial. I am inspired by my emotions, social themes and visual impressions.”
Deborah Kuster: “My work is diversely influenced by weaving traditions such as the Kente cloth by the Ashanti of West Africa and the Maya traditions of the Americas along with later American artists Anni Albers and Faith Ringgold. My quilted weavings are my interpretations of the lingual into visual imagery. Each work holds layers of labor, challenge, memory, and satisfaction for me.”
Paulette Landers: “I am in constant search for that elusive quality where fabric and paint blend and merge. My aim is to create paintings where these two elements coalesce in a new vision. Watercolor-like washes or blending of acrylics, under and over painting cover my hand dyed fabric. I especially enjoy working intuitively, letting the work speak in its own language and responding to it spontaneously.”
Denise Oyama Miller: “I look for patterns in shapes, colors, and textures, and I am drawn to high-value contrasts. The Rialto Tree Series focuses on bare white tree trunks with no bark or pine needles playing against the dark pine forest. It was this sense of vulnerability, an ongoing effort for survival on this rugged beach in Washington that I needed to explore and convey in my fabric art.”
Miki Rodriguez: Rodriguez has taught art for over 30 years at all levels including elementary, middle school, high school and higher education and is presently living in San Antonio, Texas where she now has evolved into a full time professional exhibiting artist. Her choice medium is mixed media with an emphasis on fiber.
Sara Sharp: “A lifelong love of nature, design and fabric, have led me to a career creating collaged wall hangings known as art quilts. Many years as a painter increased my intuition for design and composition as well as skills in the use of color and texture. The materials I use are commercial and re-purposed fabrics as well as custom fabrics I dye, paint, and print. I draw attention to the focal point of a composition by using the technique of thread painting.”
Maria Shell: “Since the making of my first quilt in the fall of 2001 at a little quilt shop in Valdez, Alaska, I have embraced the joy, challenge, and skill involved in the stitching of this art form. My work is firmly grounded in the tradition and craft of American quilt making. I strive to take the classical components of a traditional bed quilt and manipulate them with the hope of creating surprising combinations of pattern, repetition, and color for the viewer. I aspire to merge craft and art through the making of improvisational patchwork.”
Teresa Shippy: “I make art that comes out of memory, yet integrates realism and whimsy. More than 30 years ago I began capturing everyday memories through the vehicles of our past. I remember the classic automobiles, the trucks and trailers of my childhood and adolescence, including the ice cream truck, the VW bus, and vintage Airstream trailers. My technique layers a variety of fabrics onto canvas cloth that is enhanced with heavy threadwork to build texture and provide definition.”
Carol Trice: “My recent Connections series uses mostly torn strips of fabric that are machine appliqued. I attempt to capture the image of a dry brush stroke with the torn edge of the fabric. This series uses the familiar shape of the hatch mark (or pound symbol) interpreted in a variety of ways. Often, I use a variety of pale thread colors to add subtle interest to the large sections of negative space of white fabric, with the machine quilting echoing the hatch market motif. My most recent work has involved hand quilting to create luscious texture in the light areas.”
Marian Zielinski: In 2004, Marian began producing art quilts and experimenting with all sorts of media applicable to the medium and has become an award winning fiber artist. She has also written and presented conference papers on the arts in the United States as well as Germany, Japan, Denmark, Canada, England, Italy, Sweden, and Poland and has published several of these as articles in scholarly journals.