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It’s interesting to me how natural forms express their singularity while repeating familiar patterns. Looking at cellular forms under a microscope, one might forget and think you are seeing distant galaxies through a telescope. These art quilts and cloths capture the patterns and textures of those close views through the application of textile manipulations and surface design techniques on silks, cottons and velvets.

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Woodland Fruit

30h x 24w

In the autumn, I hunt wild edible mushrooms amongst the lodge pole pine and turning aspen in the Colorado Rocky Mountains.  The glorious rust, gold and brown colors of my mushrooms blend with the forest floor of pine needles and fallen leaves.  Looking closely at the underside of a mushroom cap, the gills, and studying the overall morphology of a mushroom and the spidery mycelium from which it grows, are important aspects that differentiate an edible mushroom from a toadstool!

I constructed this work with direct and reversed appliquéd pieces that were first variously discharged from solid black rayon satin.  The entire work was then re-sewn and free-motion embroidered.

Lab Work

39h x 37w

Having forgotten a set of incubating Petri dishes, I found that a mysterious growth had formed on the underside of the glass cover, growing from and connecting all the dishes together.

I created this as a whole-cloth discharge work on black cotton sateen in three separate stages, overdying the entire piece and then machine- and hand-embroidering the new microbial creation.  The entire work was then free-motion stitched and heavily bare-needle stitched on the edge using cotton and rayon threads.

Lab Tray

38h x 31w

One of the mysteries in preparing and studying a set of Petri dishes, is how one or two specimens always seem to disappear from the tray, leaving only ghostly impressions on the surface.

I created this work with a whole-cloth discharged base of black cotton sateen in several separate stages, reverse-appliquéd hand-dyed white cotton sateen, and finished by free-motion embroidery.

Prairie Fire

30h x 30w

One July 4th night, neighborhood children set fire to a dry field behind our home with fireworks. The burning weeds and grasses created a fireworks display of their own.

I pieced together separately discharged cotton velveteen strips, stitched and embroidered the assembly, and hand-beaded and sashiko-stitched the entire construction with embroidery floss. The edge of this piece has been heavily bare-needle stitched using cotton and rayon threads.

Emerging Spring

33h x 40w

I am reminded every spring that I really do live in a high desert area. The first few spadefuls of Colorado soil unearthed during my garden preparations reveal the tight top layers of grass and crocus giving way to roots and hidden bundles of bulbs and rhizomes ready for summer growth.

Having created this image on a whole-cloth discharged black cotton sateen, I further reverse-appliquéd hand-dyed silks and hand-embroidered the root-like features in rayon embroidery floss.

Forgotten Garden

36h x 29w

Walking through ancient Grecian gardens, I noticed the stone pillars and walls had eroded to resemble the cracked earth beds that once were host to olive trees and roses.

I pieced this work with separately discharged rayon satin using a special resist paste I have formulated. I randomly ruched a black rayon satin section and appliquéd it between the pieced sections to physically mimic the textural quality of the discharged forms. The edge has been heavily stitched with bare-needle using rayon and cotton threads.

Colorado Milkweed

52h x 18w

Colorado milkweed, the nesting place for the migrating monarch butterfly, grows straight and strong in our clay soils.

Constructed of three separately discharged cotton velveteen strips, French-seamed together, then again discharged using my formulated resist paste.  The entire construction was then heavily bare-needle stitched all around the edge using cotton and rayon threads.