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Thursday, August 5, 2010

Aullwoood: Nancy G. Cook

Aullwood is one of those shows which allows each artist to submit up to three works. Nancy G. Cook is one of those talented artists who had all three works submitted accepted.

Nancy, who lived in Dayton for a while, presently lives in North Carolina. She uses embellishment, layers of fabric, deft quilting and hand-dyed fabrics (and I think some commercially printed fabrics as well) to create wonderful images. She tends to work in series drawing heavily on nature, particularly on the plants of all types and sizes. This is her Pelton's Rose Gentian."

The lighting in the Aullwood gallery leaves a lot to be desired when it comes to taking pictures and I always forget a white card to make sure that it is calibrated correctly. I think, although this shot is very small, that it conveys the depth that Nancy acheives just using stitching.

Nancy's choice for this piece is derived from a photograph of a plant discovered by John Pelton in the 21st century. Pelton was an amateur botanist in his 70s when he discovered this piece. I think Nancy is making a statement as to the positive contribution that amateurs as well as those who are advanced in years can make.

Nancy acquired permission from the photographer to use the image in creating this machine pieced, machine-quilted (hand guided) and hand embroidered piece.

This cool piece is entitled Mimosa Dancing. Since Nancy is especially poetic in her description, I'll just include it here:

"With a dance of leaves as a gentle breeze blows , the imported silk tree signals summer in the Carolinas and life is moving on. Whole cloth, painted leaves, hand-guided machine embroidery and quilting.

Nancy has been working on a series based on leaves and trees. You can see her other work here on her website as well as more about her work in general.

The last piece is entitled "Crepe Myrtle: Homage to Klimt". Nancy said, "Since the Crepe Myrtle is so sensuous that Klimt's palette and motifs seemed perfect." Since my crepe myrtle, grown as a nod to sentimentality--reminding me of my days in Williamsburg at grad school, are presently blooming, it seems like a good time to put this one up.

"Klimt" is referencing Gustav Klimt, an artist working in Austria at the end of the 19th century. He incorporated sensuous line in a modernistic sense while still using more traditional methods as well. He is probably best known for his series "The Kiss." His work is often sexually charged.

While usually when I think of Klimt's work, I think of rich golds and darker colors, often using a warm palette. This piece seems related more to "Mada Premavesi" which he completed in 1912. Look here to see what I mean.

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