Tapestry exhibitions

•Out of Tradition: Contemporary Decorative and Applied Arts

April 28 – September 30, 2013. Opening April 27th 7-9 pm.
(New York City, USA) The Ukrainian Museum in New York City, at 222 East 6th Street (bet. 2nd and 3rd Aves.) is pleased to invite you to a group exhibit, in which Lialia Kuchma is exhibiting tapestries. The exhibition features the work of 35 contemporary decorative artists of Ukrainian background from Ukraine, the United States, and Canada. The aim of the exhibition is to showcase works from the innovative realm of contemporary art and design that are rooted in the tradition and aesthetic of Ukrainian folk art. Ceramics, jewelry, textiles, high-fashion clothing and accessories, and decorative items crafted from wood, glass, and silver are among the more than 150 objects in this major exhibition. Out of Tradition is accompanied by an illustrated catalogue with an introduction by Jaroslaw Leshko, Professor Emeritus of Art, Smith College, and an essay written by Tamila Pecheniuk and Halyna Kusko, art historians and docents in the Art Textiles Department at the Lviv National Academy of Art.
•New Art of the Loom

April 2013 – January 2015. Opening May 20th,2013.
(Various locations) Tapestries from 24 artists from 15 countries.
Lafayette, LA – Museum of the University of Louisiana; Galerie Montcalm, Maison du Citoyen, City of Gatineau during “Textile Triennial 2013″ (August 29-October 6, 2013 ); Montreal – Musee des Maitres et Artisans du Quebec (Oct-Dec 2013 ); Fairfax, VA – George Mason University (Jan- March 2014) Ocala, FL – The Appleton Museum (April-July 2014); Louisville, KY – The Kentucky Museum of Art and Craft (Oct-Dec.2014).
This unique, international show has been initiated, organized and curated by Dirk Holger, Atelier Jean Lurcat. His publication, “To weave or not to weave: a basic tapestry book for the lay person,” (Schiffer Books) will accompany the show. A 16 page free brochure will also be produced as an introduction to the touring exhibition. Exact exhibition dates will be announced when finalized.
•the 14th International Triennial of Tapestry

May 6 – November 3 ,2013. Opening May 6, 2013, 1 p.m.
(Łódź, Poland) This edition features 667 artists from all over the world, who in 27 cities present their work in 52 solo exhibitions, 33 group exhibits and 3 plein-airs. List of names here. The prestigious Triennial itself contains 132 artists from 52 countries at Central Museum of Textiles, Łódź, Piotrkowska 282. Calendar and press release.
•Small Expressions 2013

June 1 – September 7, 2013. Reception June 1, 2013, 5:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. in the Kavanagh Gallery, with a gallery talk by Laura Foster Nicholson at 7:00 p.m.
(St. Charles, Illinois) Small Expressions 2013 will be held at the Fine Line Creative Arts Center. HGA’s annual exhibit of small format work, includes pieces by six ATA members: Sandra Kennard, Tori Kleinert, Joyce Marlow, Jane Marie, Michael Rohde, and Vladmira Wackenreuther, among 31 artists selected from more than 200 entries.
•Journeys in Woven Color

July 2 – August 18. Opening Friday July 5, 5:30-7:30.
(Charlottesville, VA) Klaus Anselm and Joan Griffin will be exhibiting “Journeys in Woven Color” at the Smith Gallery at the McGuffey Art Center www.mcguffeyartcenter.com. Tapestry weaving demonstration and gallery talk: July 16 11am-2-pm. Gallery hours Tues-Sat 10-6 and Sunday 1-5.
•Integrated Circuits & Other Connections

July 4 – August 15, 2013. Opening reception: Thursday July 4th, 6 – 8 pm.
In her new exhibition, INTEGRATED CIRCUITS, internationally celebrated Vancouver-born tapestry artist, Barbara Heller, is crossing boundaries into mixed media. She is currently combining shaped tapestry, digitally printed fabric, embroidery and found objects.
Heller is intrigued by the beauty of the component parts and calls them “our worshiped electronics, the sacred bones of the computer.” She further explains, “I want to integrate the electronics with the weaving and with the human hand – an almost bionic melding. I think of these electronics as adding another layer of meaning. I want the sewn-on materials to carry their histories, to enhance the tapestry’s meaning and subtext.” In doing so, Heller invites us to re-think ourselves not only in art but also in social and environmental justice. Heller’s work can be viewed on the CCBC website.
Curated by Maggie Tchir.

Craft Council of BC Gallery
1386 Cartwright Street
Granville Island, Vancouver, BC Canada
tel 604.687.7270
email info@craftcouncil.bc.ca web www.craftcouncilbc.ca
•Color + Local

August 2 – September 2, 2013.
Exhibition of Donna Foley’s latest tapestries featuring natural dyed yarns at the Adirondack Artists’ Guild Art Gallery in Saranac Lake, NY. For more info visit an Adirondack Farm & Weaving Studio ‘Four Directions Weaving’. 52 Mine Street, Saranac Lake, NY 12983 USA. Tel.: 518-891-2615.
•The 2013 International Triennial of Textile Arts in the Outaouais: “Matrices”

August 31- September 29, 2013. Vernissage at Moon Rain Centre, August 31 3:00 – 7:00 pm.
The highlight of this edition is the outdoor laboratory at Moon Rain Centre that brings together 26 international, professional and emerging textile artists in the creation of 13 in situ textile art installations exploring the theme matrices, integrated into the natural environment.

In partnership with exhibition centres across the Outaouais region, Moon Rain Centre presents a spectrum of textile arts exhibitions & conferences. Throughout the International Triennial of Textile Arts in the Outaouais, Moon Rain Centre offers collaborative public art projects as well as workshops taught by renowned international textile artists.

Highlights of the Tapestry Exhibits include: Inner Vision, Homage to Micheline Beauchemin – Quebec’s Master Weaver, Archie Brennan & Susan Martin – Maffei Dersu Uzala & the NY Times, The New art of the Loom: Contemporary International Tapestries as listed below, for more delights check here: http://moonrain.ca/Triennale.html.
•Inner Vision

August 13 to October 12, 2013. Vernissage on Tuesday, August 27 from 7 to 9pm, with a short conference by the artist.
(Almonte, Ontario) Maximo Laura is considered a living national treasure in Peru. His radiantly colourful works depict Peruvian legends and explore his personal inner vision of the ancient mysticism of his people.
Mississippi Valley Textile Museum
3 Rosamond Street East
Almonte, Ontario K0A 1A0. Canada
+1(613)256-3754; www.moonrain.ca
•Homage to Micheline Beauchemin, Quebec’s Master Weaver

August 21 to October 13, 2013. Vernissage on Wednesday, August 21 from 6 to 8pm.
(Ottawa, Canada) Textile artist, equally accomplished with wool, metal or optic fiber, Micheline Beauchemin has produced a dazzling body of work that confounds our understanding of tapestry, sculpture and textile installations. Her extraordinary pieces grace monumental architecture the world over, for example the curtain of the National Arts Centre, Ottawa, Canada. Micheline Beauchemin (1929-2009).

Espace Pierre-Debain
120, Rte. Principale
Gatineau, Quebec, J9H 3M3 Canada
+1(819)685-5039; www.moonrain.ca

•Archie Brennan & Susan Martin – Maffei Dersu Uzala & the NY Times

August 23 to September 22, 2013. Vernissage on Sunday, August 25 from 1 to 3pm, with a short conference by the artists.
(Orleans, ON) These legendary tapestry artists will exhibit the Dersu Uzala Series and the New York Times Series.

Ottawa School of Art
Orleans Campus Gallery, Shenkman Arts Centre
245 Centrum BLVD
Orleans, ON K1E 0A1 Canada
+1(613)580-2765; www.moonrain.ca

•The New Art of the Loom: Contemporary International Tapestries

August 29 to October 6, 2013. Vernissage on Thursday, August 29 from 7:00 to 9:00 pm.
(Gatineau, Quebec) New Art of the Loom reveals the dreams of contemporary weavers from more than fifteen countries, combining ancient techniques with emerging new forms of artistic expression. From cardboard to loom, head to weft, patience to passion, these artists express their creative vision and invite you to discover its multiple dimensions.

Artists – Christine Altona, Malgorzata Buczek, Thomas Cronenberg, Thoma Ewen, Susan Hart Henegar, Ibolya Hegyi, Barbara Heller, Dirk Holger, Peter Horn, Susan Iverson, William Kentridge, Lialia Kuchma, Ulrika Leander, Lin Lecheng, Jean Lurçat, Susan Maffei, Ann Naustdal, Norgaad, Lorna Ramlochansingh, Jon-Eric Riis, Henrique Schucman, Bum Soo Song, Miyuki Tatsumi, Henriette Zegersten Hom. Curated by Dirk Holger.

Galerie Montcalm
25 Rue Laurier, Maison du Citoyen 1st floor,
Gatineau Quebec, J8X 4C8 Canada
+1(819)595-7488; www.moonrain.ca
•A Sensitive Art

6th September – 30th November 2013
A Sensitive Art is the latest exhibition by the British Tapestry Group featuring a wide range of contemporary woven tapestry interpreting the theme of touch and texture.
The Quilt Museum
York, YO1 7PW,
United Kingdom
•Threads of Life

September 14, 2013 – January 12,2014.
(Asheville, North Carolina) An exhibit of 4” x 4” tapestries woven by the members of Tapestry Weavers South will be at the Folk Art Center. The exhibit is designed to demonstrate the diversity of talent among the group’s members. www.southernhighlandguild.org
•Fiberart International

November 6, 2013 – January 19, 2014. November 10: Members Walk-through 1-2 pm & Opening Reception 2-4 pm.
The San Jose Museum of Quilts & Textiles is pleased to present the 21st triennial juried exhibition, Fiberart International 2013, the foremost exhibit for textile artists worldwide. This is the West Coast premiere of this prestigious exhibition. Sponsored by the Fiberarts Guild of Pittsburgh, this internationally renowned exhibition is considered the premier platform and benchmark for the latest movements and innovations in the ever-evolving field of fiber art. Pushing the boundaries of fiber art, the exhibit showcases works that are both conceptually groundbreaking and visually stunning. The show features 40 works from a diverse group of 37 national and international artists, both acclaimed and emerging, and explores a wide spectrum of textile practices.

The San Jose Museum of Quilts & Textiles
520 South First Street
San Jose, CA 95113 USA
Tel: 408.971.0323
•Despierto Despierto – Awake, Wide Awake

November 21, 2013 – March 15, 2014. The work of Patricia Dunn will hang in a solo exhibit at the Museo Zacatecano, Zacatecas, Mexico. New, recent and retrospective tapestries, copper wire and silk yarn sculptures as well as an installation of suspended sculptures and painted tabachin seed pads. Inspired by a poem of Antonio Machado, the show and the installation are titled: “Despierto Despierto” / “Awake, Wide Awake”. The Museo Zacatecano is in the recently renovated colonial mint, Casa de Moneda, which has dedicated space for temporary exhibits. A catalog is being published. Patricia’s work is presently in the Galerías Irma Valerio, Zacatecas, Mexico. www.patriciadunntapestries.com

The New Art Of The Loom

The New Art of the Loom 2013 – 2015

The New Art of the Loom: Contemporary international Tapestries 2013-2015

The exhibition opens at the Hilliard University Art Museum, Louisiana, USA
June 1st and lasts until August 3rd 2013

Ann Naustdal is participating in the travel show.

The New Art of the Loom: Contemporary International Tapestries, a traveling exhibit with 25 tapestry artists from 17 countries. The exhibition will be shown in the USA and Canada from 2013 – 2015. Dirk Holger is the curator, exhibition coordinator and author of the book ” The New Art of the Loom ” Schiffer Books, Pennsylvania to be published in 2013. the book will be available at the exhibition venues.

First venue:June 1st – August 3rd 2013

Hilliard University Art Museum
University of Louisiana
Lafayette, LA 70503.

Hilliard University Art Museum: http://museum.louisiana.edu/exhibitions

City Gallery of Gatineau, Ottawa, Canada August 29th – October 6th 2013

Musee des Artisanats de Quebec, Montreal, Canada October – December 2013

Museum of Loveland, Colorado January -March 2014

The Appleton Museum, Ocala, Florida April – July 2014

Fuller Craft Museum, Brockton, Massachusetts August-October 2014

The Kentucky Museum of Art & Craft, Louisville, Kentucky November 2014 – January 2015

George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia March-April 2015

Tapestries and Ulrika Leander




By Amy Abrams

Dreams Come True for Talented Swedish Tapestry Artist Living on Maryland’s Eastern Shore

While growing up as a girl in Sweden, Ulrika Leander’s parents often fretted about how their dear daughter would support herself if she became (gasp!) an artist, her intended career. Clever parents that they were, they whisked her away to language school in Switzerland—for which she showed zero inclination, then nursing school—until she flunked out, due to dire lack of interest. Finally succumbing to their daughter’s wishes, as well as wooed by her exhibited talents (tapestries woven on wooden looms with boldly colored threads), Leander’s parents set her free to realize her dreams. She relocated roughly six hours north of her family’s rural home to attend art school in Stockholm, the country’s capital and cultural center.

Ultimately, Leander would obtain a master’s degree in Fiber Art and Design, then establish and direct the Fiber Arts Department at a prominent Stockholm university. Today, her large-scale tapestries, created from watercolors of her own designs and then carefully crafted on a mammoth loom in her Royal Oak art studio on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, are in the collections of major corporations and hospitals worldwide, as well as grace the walls of some of the grandest homes across the globe.

Leander, like most tapestry weavers, loves solitude and possesses the patience of saints. Large-scale tapestry-making is an extremely laborious process. Picture it: one thread at a time, hand-woven through a large loom where hundreds of vertical threads have been strung. To achieve the final product, her initial watercolor design is enlarged and then set behind the vertical threads, so she can follow the often-intricate patterns by weaving varied colored yarns. Leander has created tapestries as large as 32-feet wide, taking over a year to complete. In our faster-is-better, highly technological world, this is a refreshing and welcome return to the slower pace of pre-industrial society, where craft was honored, and even considered noble.

Leander describes her day-to-day (often six hours at the loom) as a kind of meditation. Quiet, serenity and peace are prerequisites for a successful outcome. Even music is a distraction. Even her two cats in the studio are a no-no. As she approaches new areas of her design, she’ll tell you, “High concentration is required.” New challenges, and therefore new resolutions, continually present themselves in her tapestries. Overcoming these obstacles has developed her sophisticated command of color and strong sense of composition, elevating her tapestries, considered by some as craft, into masterful works of art. While working from original designs, she appropriates the paintings of some of her “artist heroes,” including Henri Matisse, Joan Miró, Victor Vasarely and Claude Monet. Leander portrays, on occasion, a childlike simplicity in her drawings, a “naive” approach (as it’s coined in art world terminology), adding a freshness and liveliness to her tapestries.

Leander shares that her primary intent is making joyous images. “Why would an artist make something depressing?” she asks. “I want the viewer to be happy. I want the work to be easily understood. The work should be uplifting.”

Commissions from houses of worship are common, and Leander’s tapestries decorate walls of churches and chapels throughout Europe and America. Abstractions of soaring birds, seascapes and skyscapes, and of course, religious figures, are well-suited designs for these sacred, vaulted interiors. Geometric patterns depicting cascading light created from carefully woven wools often represent the divine, such as in a pastel-hued tapestry for Seacoast Community Church, in Encinitas, Calif., and in the more boldly-colored “Mary’s Gift” for St. Joseph Catholic Church in Downingtown, Pa.

Narrative designs are frequent requests from business owners and private clients, who aim to document and celebrate personal and professional achievements in commissions such as “GROCO,” a tapestry Leander created for an Eastern Shore manufacturer of marine, industrial and automotive hardware, depicting three generations of family ownership in the almost 10-foot woven mural. In another narrative tapestry, Leander depicts the successful career of William B. Bryant, the first African-American chief judge in DC’s federal court that hangs in the United States District Court of the District of Columbia, in Washington, DC. Many offices, hospitals, churches and homes rely on the large woven works to absorb distracting echoes and improve the acoustics of their spaces, a common function of large tapestries throughout history.

Occasionally, Leander designs a tapestry inspired by personal narrative, such as “Ingrid and Gey,” which includes Matisse-like figures, as well as abstracted forms, representing chromosomes and DNA, to mark the finding of her biological family. Adopted soon after birth, it was decades later that Leander met genetic family members, including a brother who, unbeknownst to her, also became a successful tapestry designer and weaver. Other popular motifs in her tapestries, primarily trees and flowers, are a response to “the sheer beauty of nature that surrounds me here in the United States,” she shares.

Leander followed her husband’s career from Stockholm to Florida in 1980, and then to Tennessee. After his untimely death, and a subsequent remarriage, she and her husband purchased an old post office and general store, circa 1896, in Royal Oak, just around the bend from the Belleview, Md. ferry, which takes cars and passengers to nearby Oxford, across the Tred Avon River. The couple transformed the 2,000-square-foot space into their home, her weaving studio and a successful gallery, The Gallery By The River, showcasing her award-winning tapestries, as well as presenting the artwork of other Swedish artists. Leander’s large vertical loom – often featuring a tapestry in process—is always a crowd-pleaser.

From November through March, the artist’s tapestries are on display. Sculpture and multi-media works of other Swedish artists are exhibited from June through October. Making regular pilgrimages to Sweden to visit the studios of emerging and mid-career artists, Leander and her husband bring the artwork of some of Sweden’s finest to a new audience in America and have developed a devoted client base on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, as well as a growing base of browsers and buyers from Washington, DC and Baltimore. With formal studies in craft and interior design, in addition to her education in fiber arts, Leander often assists galley-goers with the right selections for their homes and offices.

Sweden has one of the longest, continuous and richly-indigenous tapestry weave traditions in Europe, and Leander grew up with textile art as a daily part of her life—with folkloric tapestries in her own home and most homes she visited. However, centuries ago, tapestry was an art of extravagance, a symbol of prosperity and elegance, filling the treasure chambers and courts of Europe and Asia. Dirk Holger, a noted author on the subject, museum curator and tapestry weaver, explains, “While tapestry became the most popular art form in the Renaissance, by the Baroque era, an insistence on too much detail in design led to its decline. After 1900, especially in the 1930s and 40s, a revival of contemporary tapestry was fueled by Jean Lurçat, a prominent French weaver.”

“The New Art of the Loom,” an eight-city traveling exhibition throughout America and Canada curated by Holger, includes a major work by Leander. “Midsummer” is an abstract landscape celebrating the summer season and the sun. Leander feels honored to be included in this prestigious show that features only 24 artists from 16 countries, displaying the most renowned contemporary tapestry weavers in the world.

Leander’s “Our Bounty, Our Duty,” designed and created for The College of Veterinary Medicine in Knoxville, Tenn., is featured in the exhibition’s recently published companion book. Leander’s father was a veterinarian and the displayed tapestry’s design, illustrating animals, was inspired by memories of her childhood when she accompanied him to administer cures for animals on nearby farms. On these excursions, the growing girl developed an early affinity for nature and animals, often represented in her work.

Leander shares that the picturesque shoreline near her home reminds her of Swedish towns. “I love living on the Eastern Shore,” she says. “I feel right at home.”