My goal is to study and master the traditional techniques of dyeing and printing on fabric, and to adapt them to my own purposes. Equally important, I realize that traditional and historical textiles served many functions, among them pure decoration, narrative documentation, and as markers of significant events and life passages. I try to acknowledge these roles in my own textiles in personal, contemporary ways.
All the steps of making an image on cloth – from concept to hanging – fascinate me, and I find it enhances my fabrics to take my concept along the path of process, connecting my thoughts through my hands to the cloth.
My work presents images of the natural world and the human experience in it, and I feel that the traditional textile techniques I use enhance the imagery. Shibori, Japanese stitch-resist dyeing, has a particularly exciting combination of technical challenge and variability, which results in richly evocative surfaces that seem akin to certain natural phenomena. The artist can control the pattern and its placement, but within the pattern there is a great range in the character of the individual mark. In addition, the craftsmanship required for shibori as well as other surface design techniques helps me to define my work as specifically fiber art, and to differentiate it from painting.