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Monday, October 1, 2012

Heidi Zielinski Stitch: Lines of Communication

 When I was in Montana, I was happy to be able to take in Heidi Zielinski's fiber art show at Montana Art & Framing, 709 Ronan St., Missoula, Montana. The exhibition ran from September 7th until September 28th, 2012.  I got there just a week before it closed, and intended to review it last week, but I was having computer issues as well as a couple of show deadlines for myself breathing down my neck.

First, for a non-Missoulan, Montana Art & Framing is a tad hard to is definitely a destination, not something that you would happen to pass by and decide to drop in. Ronan Street runs at an angle, and if you go during a particularly busy time of day when the traffic on the main street is backed up, you can easily miss it.  Like we did....and then, when we approached it from the other direction, there was an odd thing about the street sign that we weren't really sure that we were going where we were supposed to.

In addition, the gallery is in a large, warehouse like building which shares space with other small enterprises.  When we finally got there, the show was much smaller than I had anticipated, just over a dozen pieces.  The gallery space for this particular show was in front, with the side partition hiding the other artists that the gallery least I think that is what it was, although it may have been another separate show...or two...or three.

We were greeted by the shop pooch, and then the owner came out from the side where he was framing pieces.
Heidi lives in Stevensville, Montana, but grew up in Missoula, which is just about a half an hour northeast of Stevensville, so in essence, this was a hometown show for her.  My niece and my sister accompanied me, and since they don't quilt or really know much about fiber art, it was fun to get their feedback.

Of course, like most newcomer's to the fiberworld, they were taken by the colors Heidi used.  I often find that that is what pulls someone in at first, then the finer elements begin to intrigue, particularly the textural element. I admit, the palette that Heidi uses is one I tend to use as well, warm rusts, golds, blues, greens, particularly turquoise and warmer shades.

Heidi Zielinski, "Searching for Center", $210.00
 This was my favorite piece.  I enjoyed the simplicity of it, which was counteracted by the lovely changes in texture and the movement in the balls, as contrasted by the line of beads at the left of the piece.   I enjoyed the contrast of the static and dynamic....of course the fact that it uses red on a natural ground didn't hurt much in drawing me in.

I enjoy the addition of the hand stitching and the beading. The thin line of piping at the binding edge also adds to the piece.
"Searching for Center," detail.

Heidi Zielinski, "In a Cool Blue Forest," $400.
My companions liked this one the best.  It is really a pretty simple piece, I believe that the center portion is a commercial print, but when I just researched it I couldn't find it to save my soul... I think one of the things which appealed to them is the calming elements of the is balanced, even though the "center" panel is just a bit off center...the colors of course, also bring that feeling of calm.

Heidi chose to use a beaded dangle "trim" across the top of the piece.  This isn't too obtrusive, yet it gives just a little sparkle which is repeated by the gold printed commercial cotton behind it.

The detail shows the quilting in the upper portion of the piece, nicely machine quilted and I think it is a nice balance to the piece, and contains the leaf panel.  Without it, it would flow too much into the upper portion...and fly off the body of the work.
"In a Cool Blue Forest," detail.

Heidi Zielinski, "A Quiet Place," $280.00

We all enjoyed "A Quiet Place."  I am not sure if Heidi inked the trees, or printed them, but the simplicity of this piece and the monochromatic color scheme was a nice contrast to the other pieces in the show.  Of course, the fact that my brother-in-law, brother, and sister-in-law are all foresters, and my sister is a botanist....and we grew up in the hardwood forests of Michigan, and my niece grew up in western Washington makes us a little tree happy.  I also think I was drawn to it because I spent the ride from Deer Lodge to Missoula stitching...bare trees.
"A Quiet Place," detail.

You can see more of Heidi's work and read more about her on her website,


Anonymous said...

Good review. I'd have probably given up looking for the gallery ...

Glad you persevered and took excellent photos and I hope the show does well for her.

Lisa Broberg Quintana said...

Thank you! You have no idea how close we came to throwing up our hands and giving in....partly because we had wandered around and I was trying to connect with someone....and it was getting close to closing time!

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