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FIELD OF FLOWERS, FLOOR OF HEAVEN
A Collection of Rugs and Tapestries
Weaving seems to me magical. One starts with empty space, laces it through with the thin vertical lines of the warp and finally fills it in with the bright substance of the weft. Weaving is also linear, weft laid upon weft between the vertical columns of the warp. Changing the color of the wefts makes for horizontal stripes, a basic means of variety and decoration in textiles. Angled lines, formed by turning successive wefts on different warps in a mathematical progression, retain the structural soundness of the web while allowing the stripes to be truncated in interesting ways and assembled into all manner of shapes, such as triangles, chevrons and parallelograms.
If these shapes are made systematically to converge and separate, the weaver produces a motif often called “squash blossom” for its similarity to a many-petaled flower. Found the world around, this motif follows so obviously from the very process of weaving that I have no doubt it arises spontaneously wherever people sit down to a loom.
What is more fragile and fleeting than a blossom? Or more powerful and inexorable than a bud proceeding toward blooming? As striking for their symbolism as for their rich and varied colors in a green world, flowers surely formed a touchstone for human aesthetics from earliest times. Inspired by the actual flowers growing in the fields and woods and gardens of Northern California, I explore the textile possibilities of the “flower form” motif in this collection of rugs and tapestries.