medium /// textiles/fiber arts




nathan vincent


I write about embroidery and crochet a lot, mainly for two reasons. No.1, I am in complete awe of anyone that can master these techniques. No.2, I absolutely love it when an artist is able to push this once “craft-only” medium into the world of fine art. Well, not only did New York based artist Nathan Vincent do that, he also managed to cross a few gender roles along the way… are these not the most masculine doilies that you’ve ever seen? And, if the tighty-whities aren’t “man” enough for you, how ’bout these bad boys:

Bang.

{Nathan is one of an amazing group of artists represented by Muriel Guepin Gallery in NYC}





CREATIVE BLOCK (my book!)

I don’t even know what to write… this has been hush-hush for so long… but finally, I can tell you all of the ins & outs of my book that has just been released by Chronicle Books {available in stores all over the world?!!} Let’s start with the title. It’s called CREATIVE BLOCK, and here’s what it looks like (an instagram taken with my very old phone, but you get the idea):

*The cover was designed by Dinah Fried at Chronicle, and then painted by Toronto based artist Amanda Happé. I love it so much and am proud to have had such talented people working on this project.

SO, WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT:

I came up with the idea for CREATIVE BLOCK for myself, just as much as for all of you. I wanted to make something beautiful – a contemporary art book filled not only with inspiring images, but also inspiring words, advice, and tips to help amateurs and professionals alike, find their way through those days when the ideas just won’t come. Because everyone who dabbles in something creative feels that way at some point – right? Right. I wanted to write this book to show you that if you’re feeling this way you’re not alone either. I’ve written hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of posts about successful, working artists who seem to have this whole “creative thing” figured out. But surely they have blocks from time to time? How do they get through them? Where do they find fresh inspiration? How do they handle negative feedback? Does it stop them in their tracks? Now, these full time artists don’t have the luxury of not finishing, or giving up on a project – not when they’ve got a gallery or art buyer waiting on them! So how do they push themselves through those moments when the ideas just aren’t there? Or when the ideas are there, but their hands or materials will not cooperate.

THE ARTISTS:

Finally! I’m thrilled to reveal the list of 50 amazingly open, honest, witty, thoughtful, funny, talented artists that allowed me to interview them about their own creative blocks, insecurities, and inner-critics. Not only did they give us a candid view into their creative process, but each of them wrote a “creative unblock exercise” to help shake us out of our own blocks. Amazing? YES!

Gah! Almost 300 pages of stunning contemporary artwork, insightful advice, and creative-unblocking tips. It’s soooo good, all thanks to that amazing list of people who have been such a huge inspiration to me. I’ll hope, actually I know, they’ll inspire you too!

WHEN & WHERE:

The book is now on shelves, all over the world, as of March 2014, and online via GREAT.LY, Chronicle Books, and all of the other usual suspects. Check the side bar for upcoming book signing events! See you there!

ps. Thank you so much to Jerry Saltz, Brené Brown, and Faythe Levine for writing endorsements that will appear on the back cover - I love that you love it!




i’m jealous of nathalie lété


Oh boy. Scarves covered in dogs, cats, and random forest creatures. LOVE! This is the work of Paris based artist Nathalie Lété… but these are seriously just the tip of a gigantic iceberg of amazing, bizarre, fantastic stuff! For example, if dog scarves aren’t your thing, could I interest you in this?

A steak n’ roses area rug. See… amazing, bizarre, fantastic!





i’m jealous of defne tesal

Pastel icebergs floating in a flat, muted sea of embroidery thread… sigh. This is the lovely work of Istanbul based artist Defne Tesal, from her contemporary embroidery series, “Sea”. I would love to be adrift on this hand-stitched water, although the pieces in her “Along the Road” series might bring me paddling back to dry land:

Love.





i’m jealous of joanne arnett

Mugshots. Woven mugshots. Elaborate, meticulous, and absolutely stunning woven mugshots. LOVE!!! This is the work of American artist Joanne Arnett, and I am completely smitten. She’s still in the process of setting up her website, but I couldn’t control myself… I had to write about these NOW!!! So here’s how she does it – she weaves large scale portraits with wire so the face is visible when light bounces off it. The images shift, like a giant daguerreotype from positive to negative depending on where the viewer stands, or sometimes they completely disappear into the plane of fabric. I need to see these in person. A lot.





i’m jealous of leigh martin


Yarn-bombing… mushroom style! American artist Leigh Martin makes these little wooly fungi, and places them in nature. I wish she left them there for awhile, but I suppose that wouldn’t be very eco-friendly. It sure would be cool to unexpectedly see her work while out for a leisurely walk in the woods! And with that, I wish you a happy weekend filled with outdoor {and artsy} adventure!





i’m jealous of emilie faif

Ok. A few days ago, I saw these shoes on Pinterest, which of course sent me on a mad hunt to find more from this artist… and boy oh boy,  did I! This is the work of French designer/artist Emilie Faif. Aren’t these paintings on clothing lovely? Well, they’re  just the tip of the iceberg! Her portfolio is full of crazy installations and soft sculpture. After you stare at these for a few minutes, you have to go check them out!





i’m jealous of stasia burrington

Oh my. This is the lovely work of Washington State based artist Stasia Burrington. Washy drawings covered in flowers… flowers that happen to be hand-cut from quilt fabric, which are then glued on, resembling tattoos, gardens, or scars. Gorgeous! Oh, and I couldn’t finish this post without showing my favorite image from the “drawing” section of her portfolio:

Sigh ♥





i’m still jealous of magda sayeg

I’m sure you all know of American artist/knitta Magda Sayeg, the queen of knit-bombing, {I showed this bus in 2009, and I’ve seen her work featured all over the place} but today I saw this video for the very first time:

I don’t know how to knit, but watching this on a Sunday afternoon made me want to make stuff. Colorful, happy stuff. Right now!!! I love it when I feel like that. So, ok, off I go to make stuff. See you there?





i’m jealous of emily fischer {haptic lab}

♥ City map quilts. Paris, New York, San Francisco… and your home town!

Gasp! So gorgeous! They are made by Haptic Lab, in Brooklyn. The company was started by architect/textiles designer Emily Fischer in 2009, but the “soft-maps” were originally part of an academic experiment in tactile wayfinding {2002}; the quilts were inspired by Emily’s mother, Peggy, who had begun losing her eyesight from complications of glaucoma.

There are cities from all of the world available on their website, BUT you can get them to make custom quilts! Your favorite runs at your local ski hill, your tiny town, or have your house/address sewn right onto your street! YES!!! {This is in bold so that you don’t skim over it, because you would hate to miss this part… I just know it.}

I already said Gasp, right? I just moved back to my tiny little home town, and you probably can’t guess how badly I want my town map laid across my bed!!! {Answer: Badly!}

But wait, there’s more… what better way to teach your baby a little local geography:

Love. So, so, so much.

{via Design Crush}