Four years ago my friend and 8 mile neighbor Elizabeth Adams-Marks and I embarked on a journey to create a fibers show that would celebrate the many ways in which mark making with rust, plant printing and natural dyes on textiles, paper and felt could be experienced in the hands of people who love the process and have a passion for ecological and sustainable practices in their art. We did not want to do a "safe" show. The more EAM and I talked, the more we wanted to do something wild and crazy. So we invited artists we'd met online through social media.
|The front cover of the catalog|
Elizabeth and I live in Illinois and it so happens that our fiber friends live thousands of miles away. Fabienne Rey is in The Netherlands, Irit Dulman is in Israel, and Rio Wrenn is in Portland, Oregon. We are so grateful they said YES! There were lots of bumps along the road to the exhibition, including EAM's fight with cancer (WON!) and the loss of our first gallery...but we kept our heads and the show opened in August 2014 at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville in the gorgeous Art and Design West Gallery.
We raised money from several donors to fund the show and won a Small Events Grant from Surface Design Association and a scholarship from Missouri Fiber Artists. Over 300 people came to see the show during its run. A wonderful group of women enrolled in Rio Wrenn's Dyeing & Printing with Iron and Tannin Workshop held in conjunction with the exhibition. We had visitors from Alabama, Florida, Maine, Maryland and Wisconsin; from Chicago, St. Louis and points west in Missouri; and of course Rio came from Oregon.
Now after hundreds of hours of work, we are proud to announce the publication of a comprehensive catalog for the exhibit: From the Inside Out - Felt, Paper, Textiles: Revelations in Natural Mark Making. Every work was photographed, many closeups were shot, plus many gallery shots were taken showing the works in situ...important because we wanted to demonstrate the relationship of the works to each other, to the gallery and the landscape beyond, because the outside was invited into the gallery through its many windows. Many photos are quite large and span two page layouts. Very detailed captions were written; artists and curatorial statements and other commentary is included. The catalog is 100 pages, full color, 8 x 10 landscape format. And one more thing...like the exhibit itself, we believe this book is a work of art.
|Panorama shot of the gallery. In the book this image is nearly 20 inches wide!|
Elizabeth and I chose Blurb, a self publishing print on demand company to create the book. We were not disappointed. Blurb creates truly bookstore quality books and includes a free ISBN number for all print versions. The software is easy to use and free to download with no time limit on book creation. It was a breeze to upload photos and customize the layouts plus we had rich text, spell check and other easy editing tools to use. Very conveniently, we also had a Blurb support team at our disposal when we ran into a glitch or a problem. They never failed to lend a hand.
Our catalog is available in all formats and can be purchased online in softcover, hardcover image wrap, hardcover with dust jacket, PDF--which will open on most platforms, and ebook format--which is set up especially for iPads.
You can preview the book two ways--if you take a peek at the ebook, you can see the first 30% of the book online, however you'll only see EAM's work in that preview. You can see a scattering of 20+ pages if you open the preview to the print copy you'll get to see at least one layout on each of the five artists.
Elizabeth and I hope you won't be able to resist getting a copy for yourself, to remember the best show you've ever seen ;), and particularly if you were unable to see the show in person. This is the next best thing--we promise.
Visit this link to preview or purchase.
|L-R Pat Vivod, Rio Wrenn and Elizabeth Adams-Marks at FTIO reception.|
More information on From the Inside Out, with artist profiles, etc.
can be found at the blog Elizabeth and I created for the event. Here.