Sunday, August 5, 2012

My Thoughts on 20x20 cm Tapestry Open Challenge Exhibitions.

The 20x20cm format for tapestry weaving is great for weavers who have not been practicing tapestry technique for long. Although the size allows for enough detail to be incorporated into the design for experienced weavers, 20x20 is small enough for new tapestry artists to experiment with and complete a work within a manageable time frame. 

Simply creating a square that actually is 20x20 once it is woven, cut from the loom and finished off can be a major challenge in itself as a beginner. If it weren't for the good old 20x20, some of us may never have got as far into tapestry weaving as we have.

Original oil on board over wood-cut print.
This is the painting I based my first ever 20x20 on. 

                     The format leaves the warp set open for each weavers individual comfort, logistics and interpretation. 

                  Experienced weavers tend to submit finer work, beginners present more chunky simplistic pieces as a rule.

Generally these 20x20 exhibitions are open to all levels of weaving experience, and so always reflect this unique culture of sharing and trust in the concept as a professional and legitimate form of encouragement for new artists presenting their first few attempts at tapestry design. 

My first ever 20x20. Woven in 1997 for the
NZ Traveling Suitcase Exhibition. It was the 3rd
tapestry design I had attempted  to weave.
E.p.i. looks set at about 6 per inch.

As a new weaver there is pride and an enormous sense of achievement in seeing your experience of participation coming to fruition as art on the wall beside the work of tapestry artists you admire. It is an empowering and encouraging experience.

Tapestry Weavings By Stephenie Collin


I hope you find Warped Art & Design both interesting and inspiring, and that it will encourage anyone working with fibre to investigate and experiment further within their chosen field.

The basic loom, which is my tool of trade, has remained technologically unchanged. This aspect appeals to me as I weave contemporary images on a machine of such simple and ancient construction.

And if the loom be silenced,
then needles, threads and fingers
have plenty more to say.

About Me

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Waiuku, Auckland, New Zealand
I am an artist, weaver, gardener, mother and grandmother, home food gatherer, political sceptic, modest future eater, and much much more.