Saturday, August 24, from 3-7 pm
Interfibers Studio Gallery
9204 Silk Rd (County road F)
Fish Creek, WI 54212
Wendy Carpenter, owner of Interfibers Studio Gallery, has been sharing her fiber art skills weaving wall sculptures with an intern student from the Herberger Institute of Design and the Arts at Arizona State University. Carissa Heinrichs (ASU student) stayed with Wendy for the summer to learn how to weave and will be incorporating her new found fiber skills in her thesis work. Carissa will be graduating with a BFA in Intermedia, encompassing a lot of multimedia work, but focusing more towards photography, printmaking, and fibers (especially combining the three media).
Wendy believes that stronger work is produced when artists work together (brain-storming through composition choices, colors, textures and dimensional aspects with designing 3-D art work) and enjoys the active creative energy! From the internship, Carissa has gathered various methods to apply into an installation piece (part of her thesis work) for her senior exhibit, spring of 2014.
Wendy also helps women in Antigua, Guatemala to create revenue and become more self-sustainable. She teaches the women how to make patterns and sew with their hand woven fabric. She works with about six families for three months and this past winter went through 100lbs of hand woven fabric! This year Wendy taught them how to sew wrap-dresses. Her work in Guatemala can be viewed at http://interfibersstudiogallery.blogspot.com
There will be an art reception in honor of Wendy’s collaborative work at Interfibers Studio Gallery, County Road F, (2 miles east from the intersection of Highway 42& CTY F) in Fish Creek, Saturday, August 24th, 3-7pm. The exhibit will feature nine new fiber wall-sculptures and jaspe woven wrap-dresses in various colors!
INTERFIBERS DESIGN GALLERY
“30 YEARS… CREATING ART”!
WENDY CARPENTER, celebrating 30 years…owner/artist of INTERFIBERS DESIGN GALLERY, county road F, Fish Creek (1 mile east from the Peninsula art school) Door County geode jewelry art opening Saturday, June 25th, 3-8pm.
Wendy, a local artist since 1974, creates spacious 3D mix media woven wall sculptures…incorporating various natural found-objects and materials such as hand-made paper, leather, wood and metal. Her work expresses a profound connection to nature through form, color and tactile material.
Just a short history…In 1979 Wendy co-owned with David Hatch the old Hatch Poultry farm on highway 42 in Ephraim (currently Fine Line Design Gallery.) Together they renovated and restored the barn and opened Interfibers in 1981 Wendy moved Interfibers to Fish Creek in 1996 and is now celebrating her 30th year.
Wendy studied fiber art weaving for architectural designs at the Evergreen Washington State College, Rio Grande tapestry in Taos, NM, wool production on a sheep ranch in Utah and completed her Bachelors of Art at the University of Wisconsin.
More recently, about eight years ago, Wendy started working with gemstones (Jade and quartz in particular) and last spring was fortunate enough to find geodes in her back yard! A geode is a partly hollow ball filled mostly with quartz crystals or agate. The geode cavity formed from a hard little nodule that later dissolved away, leaving a void. The process started about 350 million years ago when limey sediments built up in warm, shallow seas that covered what is now central United States. After many hours of slicing, cutting, polishing geodes Wendy has created a classic display of Door County geode necklaces, earrings, pendants and belt buckles.
A cheese and wine art reception will be held on Saturday, June 25th, 3pm-8pm. Please join us on the 25th for Interfiber’s Door County geode jewelry art reception and thank you for supporting local artists!
Gps address 9204 Silk Road. (gravel easement road) Fish Creek.
“At home with Wendy Carpenter, interwoven interests”
by: Donna Marie Pocius
Photographer: Rick Wood
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel article posted January 2nd 2010 in the Sunday’s home and garden section.
Keeping a 75-year-old vision alive
An open house celebrates the 75th anniversary of The Clearing folk school, which continues the ideas founder Jens Jensen envisioned
by Pamela Parks, Resorter correspondent
Jens Jensen’s vision of creating a space for people to step outside the bustle of everyday life to experience nature, creative expression, thoughtful study and contemplation came to fruition as The Clearing Folk School in 1935.
After surviving some lean years after his death and, decades later, establishing itself as a nonprofit with an endowment fund, The Clearing, as well as Jensen’s vision, lives on. The Clearing thrives today, offering classes and a peaceful retreat to students eager to learn.
A celebration Sept. 11 marks The Clearing’s milestone of 75 years with an open house for the general public in the afternoon. An invitation-only Friends of The Clearing dinner and program will also take place that same evening. “We think we are doing much the same that Jensen did and envisioned. It is a place for people to reconnect with nature in a quiet inspirational setting where they can pursue their art or craft. The folk school philosophy is learning by doing, ideally in a natural setting,” said Mike Schneider, the school’s executive director.
The open house, from 1 to 4 p.m., offers an opportunity for people to explore the buildings and grounds, view arts and crafts demonstrations and stop in at the book store. Historical figures important to The Clearing will be portrayed by volunteers in both costume and character, mingling with guests. A highlight of the open house will be the first public viewing of a recreated mural in the schoolhouse’s main room.
Sturgeon Bay artist Ram Rojas was commissioned to re-create the mural originally designed and painted by Valdimir Rousseff in the 1940s. It depicts a shepherd in a pasture near a stream, with a dog and sheep at his feet. After Jensen’s death in 1951, the mural was painted over. A color photograph found this spring at the Milwaukee County Historical Society made the recreation effort possible. “It has been a mystery forever why it was painted over,” Schneider said. “Luckily we could find a very talented artist willing to recreate someone else’s work … everyone is thrilled with it.” (To view the progression of the mural’s recreation, visit www.ramrojas.com.)
An additional artwork commissioned by Wendy Carpenter of Interfibers Gallery will be unveiled at the Friends of The Clearing evening dinner and program. “The fabric art piece was created from old material woven by Mertha Fulkerson, a really important historical figure for The Clearing,” Schneider said. Fulkerson, a weaver, came to The Clearing with Jensen as his assistant and ended up staying the rest of her life. “She kept The Clearing going after (Jensen) died by sheer determination and the belief in what Jensen established here. She would not be denied and kept it open through some very, very lean times. It survived because of her … this is a nice way of honoring her by using material she herself wove.”
||Carpenter washed, cut and seamed Mertha’s draperies and wove 18 panels, each representing a year Mertha managed The Clearing, with every third panel representing the three buildings at the school. The wall-hanging will be placed in Mertha’s weaving room in the school house. “I was trying to … recreate kind of a forest with her woven fabric. The bluff with the line of trees, that was the image I had in my mind,” Carpenter said. The artwork is “a way to restore her fabric. It was in pretty bad condition, and she worked with very fine yardage. It was nice to get it out of the trunk and onto the wall and give it a new life.”In addition to viewing arts and crafts demonstrations at the open house, visitors can register for guided specialty tours the day of the event beginning at 1 p.m, including nature hikes, a Niagara Escarpment walk and a family walk. Self-guided tours around the property are also encouraged as docents will be available to answer questions.
The newly renovated root cellar, Jensen’s last project in the 1940’s, will be open to tour. An ongoing art show, The Clearing Speaks, is also another must see on campus, featuring art, poetry and short stories inspired by The Clearing. Live music and refreshments will be provided. The public may walk in or ride the Door County Trolley from the parking areas into the campus.
This story appeared in the Sept. 8 – 14 Resorter Reporter for the Door County.
Collaborative exhibit takes viewers to ‘China’
BY CHRISTOPHER CLOUGH
R E S O R T E R R E P O R T E R E D I TO R
Fiber artist Wendy Carpenter and mixed-media artist Ruth Philipon looked far to the East for inspiration for their fifth collaborative exhibit. The two longtime associates and friends open the new two-for-one exhibit, “China” and “Book of Changes,” with a reception Aug. 15 at Linden Gallery in Ellison Bay, known for its impressive Asian art collection.
The show features Carpenter’s handwoven, infant-carrier wall hangings with symbolic patterns, colors and forms traditional to China; and 10 mixed-media works by Philipon with painted imagery, language translations, found objects and handmade papers from China.
Carpenter, owner of Interfibers Design Gallery in Fish Creek, and Philipon, who operated Tria Gallery in Ellison Bay for 2 3 years before mov-ing to Florida in 1996, have looked afar for inspiration before. Their most recent joint exhibit, 2007’s “Circle of Women” at Interfibers, combined Philipon’s travels throughout Europe, Kenya, Egypt, Greece and Peru with Carpenter’s travels throughout Mexico and Guatemala.
This time out, a 21-day trip to China moved Philipon toward this exhibit. She said she wanted to join a group taking art and culture workshops at Linden Centre, gallery owners Brian and Jeanee Linden’s cultural center in Yunnan Province in Southwest China, but there wasn’t room.
“So, I went with a tour (to China),” Philipon said. “I took off on my own on the second day, went to museums I wanted to go to, spent two hours in buildings the tour was in for only 45 minutes, absorbed a lot around me. I do an incredible amount of research.” She studied Taoism and the art of Chinese calligraphy, among other subjects, to prepare for her work. Philipon said her inspiration came from the blend of traditional and modern worlds in China, along with the people she met there.
“They’re a very proud people, and they really do honor their ancestors,” she said. “Many of the older buildings make you realize the incredible history. It’s also very contemporary. The cities are not only huge, the buildings are some of the most extraordinary work, and they still practice feng shui. It’s a different feeling.”
Of the pieces Philipon is showing, seven are new ones based on the “I Ching” (“Book of Changes”), a text dating to at least 2,200 years ago whose principles might stretch back to around 5,000 B.C. The 64 hexagrams within it attempt to give order to random events and once were used to make decisions and predict the future.
“The work is abstract,” Philipon said, “but within each work is a very detailed painting. For the nourishment hexagram (‘Swallowing’), I used photos I took at a huge Shanghai market.” Philipon’s other three works are larger pieces of scenes in China, done as scrolls, which she completed late last year.
For Carpenter, inspiration came from a meeting with Brian Linden at her and Daryl Asbury’s “Cedars of Door County” exhibit at Interfibers last summer. “Brian came in and said he’d love to have me introduce my contemporary textiles to the very traditional textiles,” Carpenter said.
An exhibit at Linden which included textiles introduced Carpenter to the colorful Chinese-style infant carriers, leading her to create wall hangings from carriers of her design. She said she used the Lindens’ resource center, along with some of Philipon’s books and the Internet, for research.
Carpenter said she found Chinese textile artists create their works quite differently from her, and not just in selection of materials (rayons and silks versus Carpenter’s usual cottons). “It’s much more sewing than I usually do,” Carpenter said. “They work with appliqué a lot, hand stitching, embellishing, sewing on tassels. After the work is done, they do a lot of decorating. I would say half their work is off the loom; I do almost all my work on the loom. It gave me an appreciation for all the hard work they do on textiles.”
This story appeared in the Aug. 12 – 18 Resorter Reporter for the Door County Advocate
China… a cultural art exhibit iby Wendy Carpenter and Ruth Philipon
The China art exhibit will include Carpenter’s hand woven infant-carrier wall hangings designed with symbolic patterns, colors and forms traditional to China, and Philipon’s 2D mix media with painted imagery, language translations, found objects and handmade papers from China.
Philipon is creating a series related to her travels through eastern China and her extensive cultural research. She has two of the series completed at Interfibers Designed Gallery:
“The Yangtze River” (the third longest river in the world, bordered by ancient cities, temples and narrow gorges)
“Suzhou” (the center of the silk industry since the Song dynasty (960-1279)
Carpenter has completed two of her infant-carrier wall hangings and is currently weaving additional works related to Asian Art for the upcoming exhibit at The Linden Gallery. Visitors are welcome to preview a sample for the upcoming exhibit and view art work in progress at Interfibers Design Gallery, located on CTY road F, (2 miles east off HWY 42 by the Door Community Auditorium.) (920) 868-3580
The complete series for Carpenter and Philipon will be on exhibit at The Linden Gallery from August 15th until September 12.
Art reception: August 15th, Saturday, 4-7pm
Printed in Resorter Reporter, May 27-June 2 Issue.
Interfibers Design Gallery presents “Weaving a tale of ties”
As a memorial to Edward Weidner, founding chancellor of the University of Wisconsin, Green Bay, Fish Creek artist Wendy Carpenter created a woven piece of art that personifies the man and his infamous love of neckties.
Carpenter was contacted in July by Marge Weidner, Ed’s wife and almost career-long assistant at the University. Marge wanted to have something created in Ed’s memory, something that used his collection of neckties, a piece of clothing he was never without. After Ed died in June 2007, Marge and Ed’s daughter-in-law, Ellen Weidner, held onto his collection of more than 400 ties and agreed to have something created out of them in his memory.
“I was taking a dance class at the YMCA when Ellen approached me,” Carpenter said. “She told me, ‘we have all these ties, would you be interested in doing a wall hanging?’ I was intrigued by the idea, so we went from there.”
“The figures were inspired by Ed as being a people person,” Carpenter said. “It also has a 1970s look, which I think is appropriate because that’s when Ed was really active with UWGB.
“When I was weaving in the ties, I could smell what Ed must have smelled like,” Carpenter said. “His cologne, his smells came out when I cut apart the ties to weave them in.””
The ties were something Ed started collecting on his travels around the world, Marge explained, and a daily part of his wardrobe.
“Ties are easy to roll up and stick in a corner of a suitcase,” Marge said. “Often when we would go out, he would wear a shirt and tie, so as a result, I wore a dress. Whenever Ed wore a tie, he would put it in a drawer in his dresser and would not wear that tie again that year. He had enough ties to do that, and then some.”
By Paige Funkhouser
Printed in Door Reminder, September 30, 2008.
Interfibers Design Gallery presents “Cedars of Door County”
“A tribute to Cedar trees…for their beauty and purpose”.
A reception is scheduled to run from 4-7 p.m. on Saturday, July 12th. Interfibers Design Gallery is featuring ”Cedars of Door County” art exhibit by Wendy Carpenter and Daryl Asbury.
Wendy, a fiber artist, and Daryl, an oil painter, are creating a series of sculptures and paintings…depicting the character and charm found in the Door County majestic cedar tree. The art exhibit is an attempt to bring forth a stronger awareness for the arts and environment.
Interfibers is collaborating with the town of Gibraltar’s theme for the150th sesquicentennial celebration, “Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow”. To promote tree planting and preservation, Interfibers will be selling live cedar trees during the “Cedars of Door County” art reception at Interfibers Design Gallery. The tree sale proceeds will be donated to the Peninsula State Park, and hopefully, we will see many cedar trees planted around the peninsula!
For the “Cedars of Door County” art exhibit Wendy is designing a series of mix media coiled tree sculptures for the wall. The sculptures depict the unusual cedar growth and movement found in the intertwining spiraling root system. Wendy is also weaving a large cast paper inlay wall hanging… representing flora, water, earth and fire.
Daryl is painting cedar tree compositions on hard board…utilizing his unique surface painting techniques that expose under lying layers, texture and colors. Daryl paints from memory…imbued with emotion, often moody but consistently rich and deep. Both Daryl and Wendy’s work comes from a connection to nature.
This article is reprinted with permission of the Peninsula Pulse (www.ppulse.com).
Pairing Trees and Art
Interfibers Design Gallery inspired by cedars and donating to the community
By Paige Funkhouser
During the doldrums of last winter, Door County artists Wendy Carpenter and Daryl Asbury devised a plan to create art together and to use their artwork for the enrichment of the environment.
Carpenter and Asbury looked to the form, groupings, and human-like qualities of the native Door County cedar tree for their show, “Cedars of Door County,” which opens July 12 at Interfibers Design Gallery in Fish Creek.
As a means to promote tree planting and preservation, and in conjunction with the town of Gibraltar’s 150th Anniversary, Interfibers Design Gallery plans to sell cedar trees in three-inch pots for $7.50 at the “Cedars of Door County” art reception. Asbury and Carpenter are working with the town and will donate tree sale proceeds to the Gibraltar Parks and Lands Committee for use in town parks.
Artwork in the show is a mix of Asbury’s oil-on-hardwood paintings of cedar trees and Carpenter’s three-dimensional coiled fiber sculptures of cedars. Carpenter is using only three colors of wool yarn – olive, sandalwood, and a tweedy, coffee-colored yarn.
“I’ve had some of this yarn for 10 years, knowing I would someday use it on a project that involved trees,” Carpenter said. “This wool has specks that remind me of bark.”
Carpenter’s sculptures incorporate cedar tree branches she encountered and collected on hikes to Cave Point County Park, Sunset Beach in Fish Creek and on a tree farm across the street from her home. Each is attached to a wool yarn-covered steel hoop. The sculptures depict the twisted, gnarled cedar growth and the movement repeatedly found in the trees’ spiraling shallow root systems.
“Daryl loves painting trees, and was intrigued with (cedars) as soon as he moved here,” Carpenter said. “The cedar trees I like the best are the ones that are half-dead growing out of the rocks. I like to use branches that look like a tractor ran over them, or larger branches that have more interesting bark.”
Before agreeing on an art show that centered on cedar trees, Asbury and Carpenter discussed caves, liturgical themes and finally settled on the tree form.
Asbury used his paint-by-memory techniques for the paintings in the show, rather than copy images from a photograph. He said his paintings are more impressions of what he sees than needle-by-needle and texture-by-texture reproductions.
“I have an ability to remember things, without a photograph, and paint them,” Asbury said. “I paint the way something feels. It’s like the aria of an opera, the air surrounding something.
“I like to focus on the feelings you get from something, not just make a regurgitated image.”
The use of sandpaper, steel wool and sharp edges gives Asbury’s paintings a depth that does not come from using oil paint alone. This “sand painting” gives his landscapes an edge, Asbury said.
“I go back into areas after putting on sometimes as many as 25 layers of paint, and pull certain areas out,” Asbury said. “That’s distance to me. It’s what makes 3-D happen. It might take me 10 minutes to put the base layer of a painting down onto the board, but then it takes days and days and days to finish the painting and give it depth.”
Before finalizing plans with the town of Gibraltar for the tree sale, Carpenter said she contacted several other county organizations to partner with them, to no avail. When she received an email from Wayne Kudick about the town’s sesquicentennial anniversary, she contacted him about her and Asbury’s cedar-themed show idea.
Kudick said the pairing of the cedar art show and the town’s 150th anniversary was a natural parallel to the town’s logging history.
“The Claflin family settled here to use the trees in their business,” Kudick said. “If you look at the first photos of Fish Creek, the town was basically barren because the trees had been logged.
“Now here’s someone from the art community who’s saying that the trees are part of the atmosphere of the Fish Creek community. To do a fundraiser and provide funds to enhance the Fish Creek park, that helps us honor the Welcker family and preserve the park in a natural state. The combination of the art community, the government community and a charitable gift to the community shows great appreciation.”
Carpenter and Asbury are using Evergreen Nursery in Sturgeon Bay as the local source of trees for the tree sale.
A public reception for “Cedars of Door County” is scheduled for Saturday, July 12, from 4 – 7 pm at Interfibers Design Gallery, on County F in Fish Creek. For more information, visit www.interfibers.com, or call 920.868.3580.
“CIRCLE OF WOMEN ART EXHIBIT”
Please join us for our 4th annual “circle of Women Art Exhibition”
Saturday, August 25th, 4-7
INTERFIBERS DESIGN GALLERY
on County road F (2 miles east off Hwy 42) Fish Creek, WI
Long time friends and artists, Wendy Carpenter and Ruth Philipon have created new artwork for their forth annual “CIRCLE OF WOMEN ART EXHIBITION,” at INTERFIBERS DESIGN GALLERY. Ruth’s travels throughout Europe, Kenya, Egypt. Greece and Peru, combined with Wendy’s travels throughout Mexico and Guatemala, have been powerful influences on their creative art imagery and life.
Wendy, owner of Interfibers Design Gallery, has created a series of Huipil Wall hangings. The most important item of a Maya woman’s costume is the huipil, which can be loosely described as a hand woven embroidery blouse. It is the huipil that identifies the Maya Indian as belonging to a particular village.
Wendy has recreated this traditional art form by incorporating her hand-woven fabric, mix media mask form and custom mounts…thus uniting this traditional Maya art form with her contemporary fiber-art. Wendy designed a series of Maya huipil wall-hangings from various pueblos in an array of styles and colors. Wendy, renowned for integrating natural elements into her work, creates 3-D, mix media fiber wall sculpture.
Ruth Philipon, owner of Tria Gallery in Ellison Bay for 23 years, is a long standing and prominent Door County artist. After closing the gallery in 1996 she moved to Florida, but returns to Door County often to reunite with her many fellow artists and friends.
Fascinated with working in dimensional possibilities for many years Ruth now stretches the properties of paper to create optical and structural images incorporating painting and collage of landscapes, botanicals, the figurative, and the mythic. Ruth will be discussing her art work series from the Greek Island of Samos and her new botanical work inspired from her travels down the Amazon River.
The ladies had their first “Circle of Women” art exhibit in 2004, titled “Interweaving Art” in which they explored the possibilities of blending 2-D and 3-D backgrounds through interweaving paper, found objects and textiles.
“JADEITE STONE AND JEWELRY EXHIBIT”
Work by lapidary artist Rigoberto Castro & jewelry designer Wendy Carpenter
July 10th, 4-7pm
Interfibers Design Gallery
County road F(1 mile east from the PAS)
Fish creek, WI 54212
Winter, 2007, Wendy Carpenter traveled to Antigua, Guatemala for a Spanish immersion study. Through her Spanish teacher she met, lapidary artist, Rigoberto Castro.
Every couple of weeks Rigoberto’s wife and little girl would take a chicken bus into Antigua and drop off stones. For 3 months Wendy created timeless jadeite necklaces with the stones that Rigoberto made. Rigoberto’s polishing technique is phenomenal…His stones sparkle and every pattern and texture twinkles in the sun light!
To the Pre-Columbia people of Mesoamerica, jadeite represented breath, life, fertility, and power. Jadeite artifacts, associated with rituals, indicate their focus on the magical aspects of jadeite.
The term jade refers to two mineralogical distinct stones. One is jadeite, a silicate of sodium and aluminum. The other, nephrite, is a silicate of calcium and magnesium. Nephrite does not occur in Mexico or Central America in either an archeological context or in modern times. To date, all jade mine in Mesoamerica, as well as that found in ancient context, is jadeite. Mesoamerican jadeite not only centered in Guatemala but on a single location, the remote Motagua Valley.
All three components of jadeite-sodium, aluminum, and silica are white. Any color of jadeite other than white is caused by trace amounts of other minerals. If the trace element is chromium, jadeite will be green. Manganese and ferrous iron are responsible for black jadeite and cobalt produces blue, Cobalt and nickel together create a blue-green hue. Based on jadeite colors and textures, we now believe that Guatemala’s Motagua Valley supplied all or most of the jade used throughout Mesoamerica for about 3,000 years. To date no one has found another mine.
The most important item of a Maya woman’s costume is the huipil, which can be loosely described as a blouse. It is the huipil that identifies the Maya Indian as belonging to a particular village. Wendy Carpenter has recreated this traditional art form by incorporating her hand-woven fabric, tapestry mask and custom mounts…thus uniting a traditional art form with contemporary fiber-art. Wendy is designing a series of huipil wall-hangings in various styles/colors that can be seen at Interfibers Design Gallery, Fish Creek.
Interfibers Design Gallery
“CIRCLE OF WOMEN ART EXHIBIT II”
Friend according to its dictionary definition is “a person who gives assistance, a patron, a supporter.” This is the force behind the Circle of Women art exhibit II.
Ruth Philipon, painter, mix media collage artist is returning to Interfibers Design Gallery to collaborate with Wendy Carpenter, 3D textile mix media artist. Ruth and Wendy’s friendship and support for each other’s art has spanned over 27 years.
As the owner of Tria Gallery in Ellison Bay for 23 years Ruth’s established reputation and gallery supported Wendy’s promising career by exhibiting her art. The gallery was closed in 1996, and a full circle “Circle of Women” was formed when Ruth began exhibiting work at Wendy’s gallery. Wendy’s gallery continues in operation and has been for over 26 years.
The ladies had their first “Circle of Women” art exhibit in 2004, titled “Interweaving Art” in which they explored the possibilities of blending 2-D and 3-D backgrounds through interweaving paper, found objects and textiles. Ruth and Wendy are both artistically inspired by nature, traveling and enjoy working in a mix media medium. Ruth concentrates on 2-D mix media, while Wendy’s focus is a 3-D sculptural form.
On Friday, September 1st and Saturday 2nd, the ladies will be demonstrating and discussing their inspirations to create artwork through nature, travel and research. Ruth displaying drawings from her travels to Cortona, Italy where she would forego lunch to explore the city and sketch. She will have five of her Cortona drawings on display to accompany her discussion of traveling, research and creating art. Wendy will be demonstrating jewelry designing with semi- precious stones collected from her travels to San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. She is also speaking about her experience with teaching 3-D mix media at the Instituto de Allende. Together the ladies will discuss and demonstrate how they integrate found objects into their mix media artwork to create a full circle of women part two.
This story appeared in the July 19-25, 2006 in the Resorter Reporter and photo credits to Jessa Girman for the Resorter Reporter.
Collection of Contrasts
Longtime Door County artists create new work in partnership
By Donna Marie Pocius
When you take one woman’s art and integrate it with another’s, you get a “Collection of Contrasts,” the current exhibition at Interfibers Design Gallery, Fish Creek. Paintings by Isabel Beaudoin (more commonly known as Isabel) and handwoven fiber by Wendy Carpenter are recreated in new wall hangings, blending hard and soft materials. “It is quite a mixed media,” Carpenter said. “I took some of Isabel’s older paintings and cut up her paintings and weaved wall hangings.” Carpenter also married her fiber with Isabel’s three-dimensional metal repousse, creating pieces that seem to reach out to the viewer instead of laying flat on a wall. Carpenter, the owner of Interfibers, has been designing fiber wall sculptures for 26 years. One of her hallmarks is using natural found objects such as tree branches in her art, but this is the first time she has worked in partnership with Isabel and with such materials as metal and paintings. During a 70-year career, Isabel has worked in a broad array of media including acrylic, oil pastel, sculpture, batik, collagraph and metal repousee. “Everything inspires me – nature and people,” Isabel said. “It’s everything you look at.” The idea for the exhibition, which runs through Aug. 15, began during a conversation Carpenter had with Lucy Roske, Isabel¹s art agent. “One of the things that struck me is that Wendy is going down the same path (as Isabel),” Roske said. “These are two career women artists who are not inclined to work in a prescribed technique. They stray off being typecast. They may fool you. Their work is beyond a classification.” Take, for example, “Shield,” one of nine collaborative pieces the artists have on display. This wall hanging measures 18 inches wide by 6 feet long and is made from wool in brown and other earth tones as well as copper repousse. The piece shows how Isabel decorates the surface of sheet metal by hammering relief designs and how Carpenter weaves and layers fabric, integrating the copper. “Hard and soft equal one,” Roske said of the recreation. Also on display is an untitled piece shaped like a fan. For this one, Carpenter wove Isabel’s painting of a vase with cotton. Roske brought a selection of predominantly abstract paintings by Isabel to Carpenter, who chose the vase painting and others with splattered effects. “I don’t have a name for weaving of paintings, but it’s an unusual material to weave, rather than just yarn,” Carpenter said. “And it is another found object to weave with that is not natural.” But how did it feel to cut a painting to pieces? Roske, consulting directly with Isabel, who resides at Scandia Village in Sister Bay, said the artist “doesn’t have ego tied up in those pieces.” “She enjoyed making them. If someone has another idea on how to be creative with those, she is willing to take the risk. She enjoyed making the art, and if it can take a new form, she wants people to see it.” Carpenter called the process “experiential and intuitive … I hope people remember that art is about the process and not the final piece. So many get caught up in thinking about production that they lose out on the experience of work, the intuitive,” Carpenter said. “This is a way to be playful with creating artwork instead of production and a final piece for an order.” In addition to the nine collaborative pieces, there are five pieces by Isabel in metal repousee (copper and brass), a painting and original prints. Six new fiber wall hangings by Carpenter are also included in the exhibition. All work is for sale, and the price range is $200 to $950. People attending an opening reception July 15 commented on the three-dimensional quality and universality of work on display at Interfibers. The gallery on a gravel road off County F also includes work by Ruth Philipon, who will be visiting the Peninsula with new work Aug. 24 through Sept. 5 and working with Carpenter at Interfibers. The current exhibition suggests women are risk takers in today’s art scene, according to Roske. “The person who puts their work on the line and shows people their soul through art is becoming a rarer and rarer commodity,” Roske said. “While these ladies hope people will buy their art, the primary goal was making the art.” And who is likely to buy pieces in the “Collection of Contrasts” exhibition? “People familiar with my work and Isabel’s work will be interested,” said Carpenter. “We have been in the area awhile. And this is not going to happen again. People can say, ‘I have a piece from that show; remember when they did that?’”
Interfibers Design Gallery
9204 Silk Road • Fish Creek, WI 54212 • (920) 868-3580