About the Artist
I have always loved making things. Growing up in Rhode Island in the 1970â€™s, I made polyester loop potholders and embroidered patches for jean jackets. Then drawing and painting came along to save me from too much teenage angst. Weaving was something I always admired (Navajo rugs, cloth from India...), but never thought I could do. It looked too hard and difficult!
As a sculpture student at Kansas City Art Institute, I was drawn to a weaving class. I loved it, and switched my major to fiber. From there, I moved to Maine. I have been steadily working on my weaving since 1982.
Weaving is both complicated and simple. You do all this technical, precise setting up of the loom, and then back and forth, back and forth a billion times. The proper coordination of the loom, the fiber, and the weaver makes for a moment of total concentration from which a cloth is born. This is what I yearn for- that moment when the long process comes together. Is the fabric what I thought it would be? It never is, but almost, and I can see how to improve the next piece.
I have always loved the designs in woven rugs, but have not had a desire to weave them. I think because they are flat. I desire a sculptural identity for my work, and have therefore created garments. My current weaving uses contrasting fibers and colors on a fine wool and tencel warp in polychrome summer and winter weave. This combination creates a visual language of rug design in a soft, velvety fabric that is brought to life by the wearer.
My mother once showed my weavings to my great aunt who said I was doing what my Armenian ancestors did. Years later, while doing some genealogical research, I discovered that many of my ancestors were weavers and dyers. I guess weaving must be in my blood - I am certainly unable to stop.
Whenever I see someone whom I have not seen in a long time, they always ask "Are you still weaving?". When I say yes, they are pleased. Somehow weaving is an important thing to keep doing.