2020-2021 – All meetings are at 7 pm unless otherwise noted, via Zoom

September 9th (Wednesday) – Barbara Parman

History of Textile Production: Manayunk to Germantown
A history of textile fibers through the ages, as well as slides of microscopic photos of fibers including bast, flax, jute, hemp, ramie, and artificial fibers. Our own local history, starting with the purchase of land for the German Township (now Germantown) by Francis Pastorius in 1683, and early linen production by 44 German families in the area who ran flax farms and set up mills on the Wissahickon Creek to weave the cloth and much more! Please note this meeting will take place on a Wednesday.

October 8th – Robin SchwalbA Quilter’s Journey

Robin Schwalb is a New York City native who explores the rich variety of the written word in her graphically compelling quilts and fabric collages. The use of written symbols in her work balances an appreciation of their abstract beauty with the desire to include the “found art” of relevant texts. However, since the natural tendency to read a text disrupts emotional or intuitive responses to her work, Schwalb tries to circumvent this in several ways: by using individual letters or ideograms from exotic or obsolete languages; by using the text decoratively as a repeating pattern in the background; by so cropping and chopping the text that it becomes illegible; or by concealing the text in the quilting. A wry sense of humor informs her choice of images and text, which are manipulated and combined for maximum visual impact. The desire to use specific, personally meaningful images dictates a process-oriented approach. Schwalb transforms her basic material with photo silk-screen printing, stenciling, dyeing, and painting, in addition to the standard repertory of piecing, appliqué, and quilting.

November 12th – Lisa LackeyInfluences, Inspirations and Interests

Lisa Lackey is an artist who focuses on recreating her version of the world through fabric, collaged onto canvas and overlaid with detailed stitching. She refers to her blend of fine art and craft as textile paintings. She was nurtured and inspired in the love and appreciation for all things visual by her graphic artist father and textile artist mother, while her love affair with sewing and women’s domestic craft traditions were handed down to her by her great-grandmother. This has led Lisa to create work with bold graphic fabric shapes intimately stitched with meticulous details. A graduate of the University of Kansas and the School of Visual Arts, Lisa holds Bachelor degrees in both Architectural Engineering, and Environmental Design, as well as a Masters of Fine Arts. She currently has her residence and studio in Maplewood, New Jersey.

December 11th – Annual Holiday Potluck/Online Social

January 8th –Virginia Postrel The Fabric of Civilization

February 11th – Betty Busby

Betty Busby played at “Arts and Crabs” with her two little sisters as a small child and continued her obsession through graduation from the Rhode Island School of Design, with a ceramics major. She founded and operated a ceramic tile manufacturing firm in Los Angeles and sold it after 18 successful years in order to move to New Mexico to raise her son. She is a published fiber artist and teacher and maintains a busy exhibition schedule nationally and internationally. 

March 11th – Wen Redmond

“I am a process person. My process is fed by my love of being outdoors. I’m passionate about coming up with ideas and working out the kinks. This leads to more discoveries, an evolution. I make the art and then the art makes me.” Wen Redmond has been a fiber artist since 1976. Batik and weaving evolved into folk art quilts and a love of the modern art quilt expression. She continues to evolve and experiment. Her work centered on abstract expressionism using dyed natural material and surface design, creating gentle tonal contrasts and layers that interact with each other. Her work involves photography on fiber, whether it’s printed, transferred, and now includes paper or created substrates. She plays with presentations, creating new ways to manipulate the final results.

April 8th – Diane Savona

How do we learn history? Textbooks give us dates and leaders; students memorize facts for the test, but few people have a deep understanding of how our ancestors lived. As a child I felt that lessons of wars and nations had little bearing on my family history. It was like studying weather patterns, gusting far above, knowing that my peasant grandparents had survived in thatched huts in Poland. What was their story? My art is created with that question in mind.
The objects I use are collected at my equivalent of archaeological digs: garage and estate sales. In my Passaic neighborhood, there are still large numbers of first and second generation immigrants from Eastern Europe. At these sales I hear the language and find the tools of my grandparents. There, I unearth items that were once commonly used in the domestic sphere – pincushions, darning eggs, crochet hooks – but are now almost extinct. I exhume forgotten embroidery and mending, and present them as petrified specimens. My textile works are art and archaeology. They are the stories of past generations. By deconstructing past artifacts and preserving them in an archaeological presentation, I hope to change viewer perception of our textile heritage.

May 14th – SAQA – details to follow

June 10th – End of Year Online Social (or maybe in-person potluck!)