Why Fiber? Why not?
It never crossed my mind to focus on anything BUT fiber, even though it was not the only medium with which I had experimented. I had a brief infatuation with watercolors; my interior design profession demanded quick one-off sketches and renderings, and the potter’s wheel had called me to produce Japanese serving bowls.
Aaaaaah, but fiber was tactile, at once rough and silky, nubby and smooth. The fiber was colorful, printed or dyed. I could weave it, rip it, embellish it, dye it, and bleach it. I could use fabric like I would a paintbrush, and threads for lines. AND it wasn’t too messy!
While my professional life was as an interior designer and project manager, my hobbies have mostly been centered on textiles, whether sewing, weaving, embroidery, silkscreens or quilts. Working with fiber is familiar. It is a link to the women in my family who embraced handiwork as a part of their lives. And my innate artistic sense is an acknowledgment of a creative father who instilled a love of art and a “designing eye.”
My main focus is now on creating fiber art, small “collages” inspired by the landscapes and moods of the East Coast shores where I grew up, from the rocky coast of Maine to the Nantucket moors, to the Delaware shore where I now live. Working from photographs or pleasant memories, I snip, adhere, stitch, bend, and manipulate layers of fabric, which may include cotton, silk, netting, wool or raw fiber into three-dimensional scenes.
While the process may be tedious and complicated, demanding concentration, the experience of creating art can be a very calming, meditative experience for me. The overall effect is almost photographic, and often the pieces are mistaken for paintings. The trick is to lure the viewer into taking a closer look at the detailed craft required to create a realistic landscape.
A graduate of Drew University, Betsey also studied at the Art Institute of Pittsburgh and the Textile Institute of Rhode Island School of Design. Her work has been exhibited in galleries and at shows throughout the mid-Atlantic region. She is a Master member of Delaware by Hand and a juried member of the Pennsylvania Guild of Craftsmen.
The artwork pictured here is a representation of this artist's work. We aim to display only pieces that are currently in the gallery, though some may have been sold. If you are interested in purchasing a particular piece by this artist, please call the gallery at (302) 645-0551.