Wk 12 — Artist OTW — Heather Anacker & Krista Feld

About the artists

Heather and Krista are fiber artists, artisans of this craft are masters of a craft long since forgotten. Their interests lie within producing textiles such as clothes, installations and even furniture with organic materials. Despite the quality of their work as fiber artists there is something especially unique about a different aspect of their creative process. The work reviewed in the media provided shows an emphasis not on the works but how pieces are created. The pieces the artists displayed were objects within their living spaces such as furniture, art tools, and even a kitchen. Therefore, they made the art exhibition a dwelling as the name states; the artists were able to show how they live additionally the exhibit shows an artist’s tools are special and in some instance’s art themselves.

Formal analysis

The pieces Heather and Krista had on display were diverse both in size and subject. In some instances, it was chrome pots of varying sizes filled with sawdust boiling with natural dyes. It could also be the loom in which a portion of the textiles were produced. Additionally, an off-white cotton apron was in a sense art because it was paired to the user. The apron had each pocket holding a specific tool which was sewn there by the user; furthermore, each smudge or stain gave the apron patina and character. Despite the diversity in the subjects several pieces had a consistent theme. For example, a backpack sewn together in addition to a chair were very loud in color, texture, and style. The materials used made the chair look like a dark grey triangular ball of yarn suspended in midair, a cocoon of sorts. Similarly, the backpack was colorful and just as loud. The backpack resembles a yarn sea anemone with little floating appendages being produced from the sides. Both pieces have visual appeal or shock value depending on the viewer because of the imperfections stemming from their man-made nature.

Content analysis

I think the artists attempted and succeeded in creating a space to show the intimacy and bond artisans have with their tools. I think one of the biggest reasons this was so successful was because visitors of the exhibit had to take their shoes off. Therefore, they had to step out of their comfort zone and became more aware of the pieces on display. The bond artists have with their instruments is special because it becomes apart of them as sentimental value is established. I also think the name of the exhibition is alluding to the fact art lives within the artist; everything an artist touches have the potential to become something more as it wears, tears and gains patina. Additionally, the arrangement of these items can be done so in an artistic manner as the tools were hung on the walls in a creative way.

Synthesis/ my experience

I relate to the exhibition personally as I also have a bond with equipment. Instead of pencils, looms, pots, or a tool to manipulate fabric I have outdoor/hiking equipment. There is a specific pair of fatigues which I have and although I have a better pair the original will always be special to me; furthermore equipment I have modified to meet my needs is even more significant to me because I made it mine. This could be the creation of a pouch or the painting of an item to signify it is mine. The dialogue Krista and Heather had about only carrying what is important really resonated with me because when you must carry what you need on your back the list of what you need dwindles. Additionally, in the same manner Heather and Krista display their tools the same is possible for me. When I lay out all the contents of my bag on the floor to pass gear check it is visually appealing. I think art is important because it is often the human interaction with something lifeless, but this interaction begins to change the tool/work making it more and more paired with the user as time lapses. This could be painting equipment or displaying it in a certain manner or creating a painting, everything we touch we impact.