TEXTILE TALK – Art Evolved: Intertwined

Art Evolved: Intertwined is a collaboration between SAQA Global Exhibitions and the National Basketry Organization. This exhibition is the first of its kind, featuring the best in art quilts and basketry. For this Textile Talk, we’re joined by Pam Morton, NBO Executive Director, and Martha Sielman, SAQA Executive Director. They will discuss the collaborative process of creating the exhibition. We’ll also feature two exhibiting artists: fiber artist Irene Roderick and  NBO member and basket maker Cael Chappell.

Textile Talks are ALWAYS free and open to everyone. They are presented by Studio Art Quilt Associates (SAQA), Quilt Alliance, International Quilt Museum, and Surface Design Association.

Free online event:  Tuesday, June 28th at 2PM Eastern Daylight Time.

Information and registration link:  Textile Talk – Art Evolved: Intertwined

Peggy Wiedemann in “Accessories”

NBO member Peggy Wiedemann is featured in this exhibition that features artwork of accessories: bags, shoes, jewelry, hats, belts, eyewear, scarves. purses, man-purses, backpacks, etc. Jurors Andrea Caron  and Amy Smith defined “accessory” as “an object or device that is not essential in itself but which can be added to something else in order to make it more useful, versatile, or attractive.” The exhibition runs through May 7th at the Sebastopol Center for the Arts.

Information at Sebastopol Center for the Arts

Sarita Westrup – “The Tension of Connection”

NBO 2023 Conference Instructor Sarita Westrup was recently featured in an interview with Glasstire, Texas Visual Art. In 2022, Arts Fort Worth announced its new Emerging Artist Residency Program. The program provides one artist with a non-residential studio space at the arts center for 12 months, a monthly stipend for materials, and arranged studio visits with established local artists and arts professionals. The program culminates in a solo exhibition. NBO member and North Texas-based artist Sarita Westrup was selected as the inaugural participant in the program. The work she created during the residency is now on view in her solo exhibition, The Tension of Connection.

Enjoy reading the full interview with Sarita at Glasstire, Texas Visual Art. 

Shown above: Movement III by Sarita Westrup

Below: Connection by Sarita Westrup

Ed Eugene Carriere (Suquamish) Named 2023 NEA National Heritage Fellow

Congratulations to Ed Eugene Carriere (Suquamish) for being named a 2023 National Endowment for the Arts Heritage Fellow.

“For more than 40 years, the NEA has annually presented these lifetime honors in recognition of the diverse cultural traditions that comprise our nation and the individuals whose dedication and artistry contribute to their preservation and growth. Each fellowship includes a $25,000 award. Fellowship recipients are nominated by the public, often by members of their own communities, and then judged by a panel of experts in the folk and traditional arts. The panel’s recommendations are reviewed by the National Council on the Arts, which sends its recommendations to the chair of the NEA, who makes the final decision.”

The Fall 2019 issue of the NBO magazine features Ed and Dr. Dale Croes in “Generationally Linked Archaeology: The Study Of Ancient Salish Sea Basketry” by Carrie Anne Vanderhoop. The featurer details how Ed was taught basket weaving by his grandmother. “In those days, you didn’t dare ask questions, you just had to watch and learn,” Carriere explained. He would gather weaving material for his grandmother—cedar limbs, bark, and roots. “If they weren’t good enough I’d find them thrown in the backyard and that’s how I learned what to look for.”

Enjoy reading the entire article by clicking on the image below:

More on Ed and the award at National Endowment for the Arts – National Heritage Fellow

Spotlight: Paula Gron, Fiber Artist

NBO Member Paula Gron is a featured artist on the Create Whimsy blog.

“Always an artist, Paula Gron has evolved from creating sculptural baskets to designing and constructing 3D fiber art. Inspired by nature, she explores life-giving seeds and pods. Her experience in painting, weaving, sewing and fabric manipulation gives her the technical skills to create these amazing art pieces.” Read the full interview at Create Whimsy

Barbara Shapiro in “The Color of Water”

NBO member Barbara Shapiro has had a piece selected for “The Color of Water,” an exhibit at the Sebastopol Center for the Arts in Sebastopol, California. Her work, Troubled Water is made of hexagonally plaited sedori cane globe that supports a swirl of soiled papers and cloth with a pool of debris inside the globe as well.  The exhibition opening  reception is February 11, 2 to 4 PM. The exhibit will run through March 26, 2023.  

More at Sebastopol Center for the Arts.

Elizabeth Runyon in “From Lausanne to Beijing”

Congratulations to NBO member Elizabeth Runyon, who has had 3 of her woven sculptures juried into the the 11th “From Lausanne to Beijing International Fiber Art Biennale”. Runyon was invited to submit three works in conjunction with this year’s theme, “Space–The Dimension of Fiber”.  Her artworks included were “Greed,” (shown above),”Gluttony” and “Dancing on Three Legs.” The exhibition is jointly hosted by the Academy of Arts & Design, Tsinghua University and the China National Arts and Crafts Society. Over 300 works of fiber art by artists from five continents are featured in this Biennale. The exhibition will be available for online viewing to audiences across the globe through Feb 16, 2023.

“With the pandemic spreading, no time in recent years has ever been as full of instability as the present. Lin Lecheng, head curator of the exhibition, said of this year’s Biennale: “Fortune rewarded artists’ passion, providing an opportunity to hold this exhibition in this challenging year and once again proving art’s indomitable vitality.” The Biennale pursues the intrinsic nature of fiber while also exploring a new format: The virtual exhibition. The virtual exhibition hall revolutionized the relationship between fiber and space, making it possible to experience art from anywhere in the world. By the “2.5D” virtual venue, audiences were provided with all-new perspectives and experiences.”



Polly Sutton and Gail Tremblay are SOLA Award Recipients

Congratulations to Polly Sutton and Gail Tremblay on their 2022 SOLA Awards!

Founded in 2016 by Seattle artist Ginny Ruffner, the SOLA Awards… Read More

Kadey Ambrose and Sarita Westrup Chosen for ACC Emerging Artists Cohort

Those familiar with NBO online programs and member exhibits will know the names of these two artists recently selected to be designated among the 2022 American Craft Council Emerging Artists Cohort.

“Through facilitated workshops, presentations, and conversations, these artists will gain a deeper understanding of the professional skills and opportunities that will help them diversify income streams and thrive in their chosen careers. Participating artists will connect with established industry leaders from a variety of craft sectors including gallerists, curators, marketplace artists, exhibiting artists, social practice artists, designers, and more. After the three-month program is complete, all participating artists will receive an incubator grant of $10,000 to help propel them to the next level of their profession.”

The Basket Weaver’s Basket Song

NBO member Sherri West sent along this wonderful story to share with the basketry community:

The Basket Weaver
by DeAnn Rasmussen
August 1, 2022

I learned to weave baskets in the early 1980’s, when I lived in Minneapolis, Minnesota. There were a lot of little stores in the area that sold a large variety of commercial basket weaving materials, and taught all manner of basket styles. It was a great learning experience. Shortly after that, I moved to a very small town in northwest Wisconsin that was surrounded by lakes and forest. Quite the change from the big city. There were no stores in the area that sold basket weaving materials, and no one teaching any classes. However, I still wanted to weave baskets, so I decided to see what I could find in the woods to use for baskets. It was quite the learning experience. Lots of trial and error. It took me a few years to figure out just which indigenous materials would actually work. I learned what season to gather things in, how to prepare and store them, and how to put them to the best use. Being self-taught in such a large undertaking, is daunting to say the least.

DeAnn Rasmussen, with some of her baskets.

I became known as the ‘basket lady’, and people would bring me things that they thought I might be able to use. One of the best things that someone brought me was a large popple log. My neighbor was cutting firewood, and thought the log might be some use to me. I cut the outer bark off with a draw knife, cut the cambium layer into strips, coiled them up to dry, and had beautiful flat reed to build several wonderful baskets. The worst thing anyone ever brought me was a road killed porcupine. I had been using quills for some of my baskets, so it seems like a good idea. However, it was a very hot summer day, and when I got home from work, the porkie was stinkin’ to high heaven. I shoveled it into a cardboard box, took it out to the woods for a decent burial, put down tobacco and wished it a safe journey to the spirit world.

Red Willow became one of my favorite materials to use. It was abundant, accessible, renewable, and beautiful to work with. One, day, some friends of mine who had friends that were expecting a baby, asked if I would make a red willow basket for the baby. I was thinking that they wanted a nice little basket to put on a shelf to hold baby powder and other little things. Oh no, they wanted a bassinet! I accepted the challenge, and gathered willow and wove on that basket for well over one week. As I worked, the essence of the willow entered into my very pores and became a part of me. It soon became a song in my heart and soul. When I finished making the basket, I wrote down the words that were in my heart, and “Basket Song” became something to remind me of the days, when the red willow became a part of me. It is not often that we create something that becomes a treasured memory. The red willow bassinet is one that I will always hold in my heart. I didn’t think to take a picture of it, and it was shipped to the couple at their home in Florida. I never even got to see the sweet baby in the basket. I can only hope that over time, the basket has held many babies, to cradle them in dreams, “of dancing stars, and singing streams.”

Basket Song

Listen closely, baby dear,
while spirits whisper in your ear,
and softly sing a woodland tune,
as you slumber ‘neath the moon.

For from our gentle mother Earth,
the willow seed has given birth,
and nurtured from the sun on high,
it reaches out to touch the sky.

The downy little songbirds know
a song to make the willow grow.
And so the song is ever there
to lull you as you nestle there.

The soft warm breezes hear the tune,
and late at night, beneath the moon,
the rhythm of the cradles born
to rock you gently until morn.

Thru moonlit nights and sunny days
the growing willow marks the ways
of all the things that make it strong
and adds them to its inner song.

Now the circle is complete;
a basket for the baby sweet.
A place to cradle you in dreams
of dancing stars and singing streams.

DPT May 13, 1986