CALIFORNIA

Nancy Moore Bess

Beyond the Basket

Nancy Moore Bess Kaki ShibuKaki Shibu, 2004
Fiber: 8.5″ x 7″ x 5.5″ and 5″ x 5.25″ x 4″
Lent by Browngrotta Arts

The themes of containment and secrecy have driven Nancy Bess’s work for over 20 years. Inspired by the 1993 New York exhibition Secrecy: African Art that Conceals and Reveals, Bess says, “I use lids and closures to imply that, though there is something inside my vessels, we aren’t allowed access to that space and those mysterious contents.” In addition to a strong African influence, she counts Japanese, Asian Indian, and Californian colors and motifs among the inspirations for her work.

Visit www. nancymoorebess.com for more information.

Leah Danberg

Beyond the Basket

Leah Danberg Cock-A-Doodle-DoCock-a- Doodle-Do, 2013
Fiber: 16″ x 5.5″ x 12″
Lent by the artist

Leah Danberg has been a fiber artist and basket maker since 1984. She was initially drawn to the half-hitch knotting technique she learned from Jane Sauer because of the flexibility it gave her to create sculptural forms to explore color, humor, and text. Using waxed linen and embroidery floss over a carved Styrofoam form, she says, “I tend to work intuitively, so about the only thing I draw out is the shape of the form, deciding on the colors, patterns, and even the placement of text as I work.” She particularly enjoys the problem-solving and engineering challenges of each piece, and sees her work getting larger and more complex as it evolves.

Visit www.delmano.com for more information.

Pat Hickman and Lillian Elliot

New Basketry

Pat Hickman and Lillian Elliot AlienAlien, 1986
Fiber: 16.5″ x 41″ x 22″
Lent by Gravers Lane Gallery, Philadelphia

After they met as mentor (Elliott) and student (Hickman) at the California College of Arts and Crafts, textile artists Pat Hickman and Lillian Elliott collaborated for 11 years, experimenting with a variety of techniques, textile structures, and materials. Lillian built basketry reed structures in their collaborative work; Pat provided the skin membranes in their art baskets. The death of Lillian Elliott (and her colleague Joanne Segal Brandford) in 1994 had a marked effect on Pat Hickman’s life and work, and to honor her, Hickman serves on a committee to award the Brandford/Elliott Award for Excellence in Fiber Art biennially to an emerging fiber artist.

Visit brandford-elliott-award.com for more information.

Pat Hickman

New Basketry

Pat Hickman FoldFold, 2001
Fiber: 20″ x 13.5″ x 3.5″
Lent by the artist

In her work, Pat Hickman takes on time; holding it back, running with it. With visual metaphors and unexpected materials such as cocoons, palm sheaths, staples, and wire, she explores the unavoidability of disintegration, the inevitability of change, and the transformative power of attention and memory. She says, “Labor is a big part of my work, the excessive, obsessive labor, the slowing down of time, stepping out of the urgent pace of daily life. Out of seemingly nothing, something is created. I invest in what I love doing. In the end the work itself is about the labor and about holding what cannot be captured: light, color, breath, time.”

Visit www.pathickman.com for more information.

Ferne Jacobs

New Basketry

Ferne Jacobs

Ferne JacobsHeart Dance, circa 1995
Waxed linen: 10″ x 14″ x 10″
Lent by Martin Wice

Ferne Jacobs was born in Chicago in 1942 to Jewish parents who emigrated from Eastern Europe and later moved to Los Angeles. She took classes at Pasadena’s Art Center College of Design, San Diego State University, Claremont Graduate University, the Pratt Institute and the Haystack Mountain School of Crafts and counts Dominic di Mare, Lenore Tawny, and Arline M. Fisch among her inspirations. Her contemporary baskets are in the collections of the Honolulu Museum of Art, the Mint Museum, and the Smithsonian American Art Museum, to name a few.

Visit www.browngrotta.com or nancymargolisgallery.com for more information.

Aaron Kramer

Beyond the Basket

Aaron Kramer Half and HalfHalf and Half, 2008
Reclaimed street-sweeper bristles, re-sawn hardwoods, washers, wire: 24″ x 8″ x 8″
Lent by the artist

The core sentiment of Aaron Kramer’s sculptural work of the last 20 years is that “trash” is a failure of imagination. He thrives on reinventing found and fabricated materials as he creates objects that ask us to consider the transcendent nature of ordinary objects. His primary objective is to make well-designed, well-made artworks from reclaimed and recycled materials that subvert the modern concept of “junk.”

Visit www.urban-objects.com for more information.

Gyöngy Laky

New Basketry

Gyongy Laky TraverserTraverser, 2016
Branches, commercial wood, screws, acrylic paint: 24″ x 24″ x 24″
Lent by the artist

Gyöngy Laky is attracted to humble materials and simple, direct methods of hand construction in accord with basic, grassroots ingenuity. Working with wood, wire, screws, nails, and found natural and manufactured objects, she is an activist for environmental sustainability, gender equality, diversity, and peace. She studied art and design at University of California at Berkeley and is a former faculty member at University of California, Davis.

Visit www.gyongylaky.com for more information.

Ed Rossbach

New Basketry

Ed Rossbach

Ed RossbachMickey Mouse Coil Basket, 1975
Synthetic raffia, sea grass: 6″ x 9″ x 9″
Lent by Jim Harris

Ed Rossbach (1914–2002) was a fiber artist whose preferred techniques were basket making and weaving using nontraditional textile materials such as foil, plastic bags, Mylar, twigs, staples, Styrofoam, and twine. Originally from Chicago, he received a BFA from the University of Washington and MFAs from Columbia University and the Cranbrook Academy of Art. Rossbach taught at the University of California, Berkeley, for 29 years and authored the seminal books The Nature of Basketry and Baskets as Textile Art. His work is in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Arts and Design, the Renwick Gallery, Oakland Art Museum, and the Museum of Modern Art.

Visit www.browngrotta.com/Pages/rossbach.php
or www.craftinamerica.org/artists/ed-rossbach for more information.

Amanda Salm

Beyond the Basket

Amanda Salm Showered With LaughterShowered with Laughter, 2008
Horse hair, natural dyes, metal hanger: 21.5″ x 11.5″ x 10.5″
Lent by the artist

Unusual probably best describes the sculptures of Amanda Salm. From the unusual medium of horsetail hair they are made of, to the forms and ideas that inspire them, and to the inordinate amount of time spent making one. The culmination of these unusual circumstances is where revered, ancient textile techniques find a contemporary and sometimes quirky home.

Visit www.amandasalm.com for more information.

Kay Sekimachi

New Basketry

Kay Sekimachi Basket with SphereBasket with Sphere, 2003
Synthetic raffia: 6.5″ x 14″ x 14″
Lent by the artist

Kay Sekimachi has been a multiple-media textile artist for over 65 years, as a weaver who uses off-loom techniques such as split-ply twining and card weaving and a paper maker creating bowls and baskets. She says, “In everything I do, I try to be true to the materials. I love working within limitations. I love order. I love the calm that work brings.”

Visit www.browngrotta.com/pages/sekimachi
or americanart.si.edu/collections/search/artist/?id=4363 for more information.

Peggy Wiedemann

Beyond the Basket

Peggy Wiedemann Exploring TooExploring Too, 2006
Pine needles, Irish waxed linen: 8″ x 11″ x 9″
Lent by the artist

As a contemporary fiber artist, Peggy Wiedemann prefers natural fibers and materials whose unique shapes, designs, and colors inspire her. She says, “The interplay among mind, hands, and a host of materials continually stimulates the creative process and leads my work in new directions. Using traditional materials in sometimes unorthodox ways, I want to create designs, shapes, and styles that stretch the imagination and react with the senses.”

Visit peggywiedemann.com for more information.

Coiled feather basket

Cultural Origins
RRR_23_004
Central California (possibly Yokuts)
c. 1890
Sumac, devil’s claw, wool, quail feathers (RRR.23)
Lent by Lois Russell
6″ x 8″ x 8″

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