Robert Clarke, a long time friend of my husband’s from London, paints dogs… and they are fantastic. Robert has a very casual attitude about his paintings, talking about how quickly he makes these dog portraits, with some of them taking just minutes. When he first told me about his paintings, before seeing them, I almost thought he was joking. Once I saw them, I understood. What I understood was Robert’s incredible ability to capture not just the gesture and life in the animal, but he really seems to get its personality. That is true talent in my book and the less time it takes him to make a portrait, the more brilliant it is.
I once heard a quote about talent and ability in relation to compensation – I cannot remember who said it, but it always stuck with me… It said something to the affect that you cannot put a price or an hourly wage on a craft because its value is in the culmination of all the previous years of honing and perfecting that craft. Robert has been a painter for a long time.
Mr. Clarke will be exhibiting his dogs at Rebecca Hossack Gallery, 262 Mott Street in Nolita (NYC) and the opening is this Wednesday, November 16, from 6-8pm. It is DOG FRIENDLY, so please bring your pup! RSVP on Facebook.
Next Friday, Earth Day, April 22, 2011 from 6pm to 9pm, I will be participating in a really interesting event at the Textile Art Center in Brooklyn. This event, curated by environmental fiber artist and writer, Abigail Doan, will feature a collection of NYC’s most amazing designers and artists whose work is based on a respect for the planet and is ethical to the core.
Invited artists and local sustainable fashion designers will showcase their fiber, textile, and green design initiatives, as well as offering activities related to slow fashion strategies and environmental outreach. Visitors will be able participate in on-site activities and share in a dynamic community dialogue for Earth Day 2011.
Give away gifts for the event will include five copies of natural dye expert and slow fashion advocate Sasha Duerr’s book, The Handbook of Natural Plant Dyes. There will also be organic treats and chilled refreshments from local sponsors.
Artists and Designers include:
Susan Benarcik: Known for her dramatic sculptures and environmental installation projects crafted out of recycled and nature-based materials, Susan will share her resourceful and innovative methods for creating organically inspired textile and surface designs.
Meiling Chen: One of the pioneering sustainable fashion designers on the New York Fashion scene, ‘Fearless Dreamer’ Meiling will share new meditations on fashion with her latest handmade creations that are embedded with intimate messages and poetic musings crafted out of fabric and thread.
Abigail Doan and Ceca Georgieva: Environmental fiber artist and writer, Abigail Doan, currently divides her time between the U.S. and Europe, and while living in Sofia, Bulgaria, met the textile artist, Ceca Georgieva. Both share a passion for traditional costumes and fiber as well as green strategies in art making. Abigail’s recycled fiber forms and Ceca’s vegetation based accessories invite conversations on domestic crafting and ideas about fashioning self.
Daria Dorosh of Fashion Lab in Process: An award-winning multimedia artist and researcher in field of art, fashion, and technology, Daria will share work created in the area of programmed knits with the assistance of John Kiehl and Jose Marinez. The team will demonstrate “why pattern is a rich language between fashion, science, and technology.” Knit samples from Stoll, NFC (near field communication) tagging technology, sonification of textiles, and algorithmic patterns for textile design will all be discussed.
Xing-Zhen Chung-Hilyard and Melissa Kirgan of Eko-Lab: Currently in residence at Brooklyn Navy Yard’s Pratt Design Center For Sustainable Innovation, Xing-Zhen and Melissa are shining examples of why hand-crafted, locally-made fashion is both fashion-forward and vital to community livelihood. As veterans of NYFW’s The GreenShows and collaborators with artists such as Jennifer Wen Ma, the duo will share a bit of what constitutes the ‘lab in eko’.
Titania Inglis: A Brooklyn-based fashion designer with a devoted international following, Titania is one of the most thoughtful and talented designers on the sustainable fashion scene. Her methods demonstrate state-of-the art experimental design concepts and a production strategy geared to minimize waste and needless consumption. Titania will share designs from her latest collection as well as examples of zero-waste patterning and a-to-z draping.
Anjelika Krishna of a.d.o clothing: A native of New Delhi, India, now based in New York, Anjelika founded ‘anjelika dreams organic’ or ‘a.d.o’ as a true expression of her commitment to sustainable practice as well as traditional Indian culture. Her collections incorporate carefully selected organic textiles and Ayur-vastra (Indian natural herb dye). Anjelika will share her extensive knowledge of ayurvedic dyes and natural plant materials
Rachel Miller: As a sculptor, educator, and sustainable textile expert, Rachel bridges a variety of disciplines to tell a story that is rich in texture, pattern, and ecological awareness. Her work focuses on environmental patterns and how they interconnect with our own patterns of growth, departure, and ongoing rejuvenation. As an expression of ‘fashioning self and the environment’, Rachel will share videos from of her performance work as well as organic sculpture.
Eve Mosher and Renata Mann: Environmental artist Eve Mosher and fiber installation artist Renata Mann have teamed up to debut (Intra)structures for Earth Day 2011. This amazing new collaboration features a ‘textile based plant growth system utilizing and embracing existing architecture in the city as well as the architecture of our lives.’ Seeding the City will also be shared with visitors.
Zoe Sheehan Saldana: Conceptual sculptor Zoe Sheehan Saldana uses everyday materials to create a dialogue regarding our habits of consumption, adornment practices, and definitions of functionality. She will present her milkweed-filled ‘Life Jackets’ and also show guests how to make DIY flotation belts as an example of the crossover between contemporary textiles and environmental adaptation.
Shannon South of reMade USA: Designer Shannon South has created a chic design company that upcycles used materials to make one-of-a-kind bags and home accessories. Designing desirable objects out of discarded materials and diverting waste from landfills is reMade USA’s vision. As a new resident at Brooklyn Navy Yard’s Pratt Design Center For Sustainable Innovation, reMade USA is a stellar example of why locally made is key to sustainability. Join Shannon as she shares sewing projects for leather recycling and DIY design.
Tara St. James of Study NY and Andria Crescioni with Awamaki Lab: Ecco Domani award-winner Tara St. James of Study NY has teamed up with the Peruvian non-profit textile artisan initiative Awamaki Lab to create one-of-a-kind wovens that bring the strands of sustainable storytelling together. “Awamaki is working with indigenous Quechua women weavers to improve their skills and increase their access to market, thereby revitalizing an endangered weaving tradition while affording Quechua women a reliable source of income.
Edina Tokodi of Mosstika: Brooklyn-based Hungarian artist Edina Tokodi has received international recognition for her moss graphics and greening strategies in urban spaces. Part whimsical, part subversive, and always a surprise in terms of bold placement, Mosstika’s interventions encourage us to think outside the box in terms of greening our vistas and pathways.
Tali Weinberg: Brooklyn-based artist and activist Tali Weinberg creates installations and outreach projects informed by her work in human rights and fair trade advocacy, community organizing, and grassroots development. She is a current artist in residence at the Textile Arts Center, where she is helping to establish their new natural plant dye project in a shared community garden.
For further information, please contact Abigail Doan, artist and curator for ‘Fashioning Self and the Environment’, via e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please rsvp to the Textile Arts Center at email@example.com
The Textile Arts Center is located at 505 Carroll Street, Brooklyn, New York
See travel directions here: http://www.textileartscenter.com/hours_directions
We dropped by Bushwick today to check out Beta Spaces, an alternative art festival where you can visit studios and see a wide range of local art installations. I think these bedazzled shoes on a telephone line may have been my favorite.
Chris Jordan is one of the most important artists of the century. He’s a photographer who sometimes manipulates images to depict the poignant reality of what we, as humans are doing to the planet. Plastic Bottles, 2007. “Depicts two million plastic beverage bottles, the number used in the US every five minutes.”
Seeing his work for the first time made me uncomfortably aware of how careless “normal” behavior is. I made a conscious decision to try to avoid single use plastic bottles, plastic bags, packaging etc. If you can’t avoid the packaging, please recycle it. Check your local recycling guidelines to find out which things are recyclable. (a lot of things we think are recyclable are not)
See also: The Story of Stuff : Bottled Water