There are so many ways to communicate ideas through fiber arts, and embroidery is one form that we tend to think of as a tradition lost in time. We connect these strings of thought to a period where girls were taught to do needlework as a right of passage; we immediately think of cross-stitching and flowers. But, in the modern world many women have owned this craft and experimented with various and unique ways of expressing themselves through thread.
What we love most about Stacey's work is her incredible use of color and composition. Her skilled execution of stitches and layering are also impressive. We never get bored looking at her page, as her style always seems to be evolving - going through a variety of applications of her medium; from geometric to free flowing, abstract to natural, and sometimes scientific and cellular.
Han's playful experimentation of medium and imagery is grossly appealing. The way she embellishes photos, postcards, stamps, and natural elements weaving together concept and form is uniquely fascinating.
Is there something familiar about her work? Absolutely. Knie states, "I’ve been embroidering viruses for over 8 years now", and with the impact that Covid-19 has had in the world, this seems more contextual now than ever before. Her love of science and space are apparent in her work, and we love the way her stitches preserves microscopic views.
If texture is your thing, Hughes nails it. Her use of a variety of threads and yarns, each with their own unique properties, combine in 3 dimensional application for a finished product that is bursting with color and personality. There's something abstractly floral about her work, which bursts off the hoop like a beautiful bouquet.
Bennings' pictorial embroidery has an illustrative quality to it that is so graphic in nature, we would love to see it in book format (an embroidered book). Her focus seems to be plant life, but she also captures landscapes and personal human moments in time (such as reading a good book or mixing a drink).
We just love how Wilde's work transports us to the ocean, with textures and 3 dimensional applications that are so realistic that we can't help but hear the lapping of the waves on the sand. Her color selections are very natural and soothing - adding to the connection of environment and application.
Reinterpreting the tattoo art paintings of her daughter (@gan_dalf) into embroidery so accurately, you almost see it in ink. Besides appreciating the skill of her craft, we love to see a great mother daughter collaboration.
Natalie's work falls into two main categories for us. There's the embroidery on paper using basic lines and geometry, and including natural materials, that has a clean and simple yet powerful appeal. And then there's the dissection of color in imagery, sometimes skewing photos with a time warp reminiscent effect.
Emily's embroidery inspired by natural textures often brings us to the ocean floor or on a study of geological forms, but there's an abstract quality to the layers she creates which is almost cellular in essence - bringing our thoughts to the base elements of nature's structure.
*all photos © the individual artists.
In the digital age we find ourselves glued to our screens, scrolling past the many videos, photos, and graphic arts created with the aid of computers or other technological devices - often forgetting the painstaking traditions of hand crafted arts, such as weaving or embroidery. But, artists from around the world continue to create these handmade labors of love, connecting the past with the present in new and sometimes unexpected ways.
Brooklyn based artist Erin M. Riley is the most notable example of a weaver who connects the traditional weaving methods of times past with her experiences a person raised in the digital age (or “as a queer human who grew up in chat rooms” as she puts it).
Some of her work expresses imagery that many people may find disturbingly personal or compromising - such as masturbation or the tweezing of nipple hairs, as well as woven depictions of pornhub screenshots. Then of course there are her mirror selfies (inclusive of her colorful body art) and still life depictions of items and photos which tell her story - a tribute to personal growth. What we find most interesting from Riley's vast body of work are the sociopolitical commentaries which are portrayed through woven imagery - statements about drug use or alcoholism, police brutality, the gap between classes of people, women's rights, etc.
Her skill as an artist is evident through the details of her work, as is the strength of her convictions and her understanding of the world around her.
To see more of Erin's incredible work check out her instagram page.
All images ©Erin M. Riley.