Repetitive sewing techniques allow me to reflect on personal history and my spirituality while making. The working process serves as an avenue for spiritual meditation, through which I create visuals that are loosely narrative. I work in techniques such as weaving, embroidery, and fabric collage, incorporating a variety of found materials and fibers.
The work I create has aspects and references of my personal history as well my products of spiritual meditation. I use varying scales to create experiences for my viewers. The tactile quality and familiarity of materials allow for an intimate interaction between work and viewer. This closeness allows viewers to see the many different materials and fibers that are put into each piece.
While making, I find the rhythm that is found in processes such as weaving, that allows me to shift from focusing on the movement of the hand toward spiritual thought. This makes the product of my spiritual meditation a concrete object that I can share with others.
In the collage work, I am connecting myself to ideas of domesticity as well as my relationship with my grandmother. I include moments in the work that hint at the tradition of quilting to help situate myself within the history that came before me.
Statement for Prayers for Rain solo exhibition:
Prayers for Rain began in August of 2016. While participating in a textile residency in San Pablo Etla, Oaxaca, Mexico, I was learning the new skill of backstrap weaving in a new culture as well as finding myself in a sort of stalemate in my personal life progression.
Having completed my MFA, my husband and I were looking for our next step in our journey and couldn't seem to get a hint of where to go or what to do. I threw myself into the residency and found guidance for both my artwork and personal life.
" In Mexico the shed rolls and battens which rattled like the soft sound of rain or the warning of a rattlesnake, made the loom a constant prayer for rain"- Mexican Indian Constumes
There it was. A prayer for rain. A want for growth, for a fresh start, for stimulation, for fertility. That's what I needed.
In Oaxaca it downpoured everyday. So much that it would become an inconvenience at times. But it if didn't rain, the heat was stifling. It's a balancing act, the raincultivated crops and cooled off the mountain villages while sometimes flooding roads up to your shins.
The work in this exhibition became a series of prayers and meditations on rain itself and the connotations of rain in life. The first and smallest wall contains the parts of my backstrap loom and a test weaving with traditional patterns as well as objects collected during my evening walks around San Pablo Etla. There are photographs dispersed throughout the space that are also from my walks and adventures. The wall containing mostly photographs also has three weavings created on my backstrap loom in Oaxaca. The back wall of the space holds a series about Hierve del Agua, one of the world's few petrified waterfall and spring parks. I went here expecting to be impressed but I was in awe of the entire area. The colors were other-worldly and pools of mineralized water seemed as if you could travel to space while looking at them. These pieces were all created on a frame loom using yarn sourced and dyed from Oaxaca.
I've learned that waiting for the rain to come isn't always easy, but when the rain does fall it renews everything it touches.