About My Work

 

My creative process stems from a belief in perfection and symmetry but with the knowledge that these qualities often hide within imperfection and asymmetry. I want to bring a love of exploring, a minimalist sensibility, and a sculptural approach to making. For this reason, I strive to understand the capacities of my chosen materials, wool and silk, to perform both physically and poetically.

 

The Japanese technique of blending loose Merino wool fibers with open-weave silk fabric is most frequently referred to as Nuno felt.  During the felting process, wool fibers are agitated vigorously, causing them to migrate and entangle with the woven fabric, as well as “capture” any other fiber or fabric embellishments they come in contact with. Different fibers have different physical characteristics, for example shrinkage points or absorbency. As the wool fibers entangle more tightly, they condense or shrink faster than the silk, causing the silk to contort and twist. A loose assemblage of fluffy wool roving and pieces of silk fabric transform into a sumptuous and shimmering new fabric. This exquisite new fabric is durable, yet lightweight, sheer, and drapes beautifully.  

 

As an artist, I accept that we are made of this earth and in some manner, have always known the earth and its environs. Being part of the earth, its secrets are part of our fiber, our purpose, our memory, and our spirit. We are this place and all of its stories and events. Making connections between our past experiences, their location and time is to be part of a greater whole while living in the present. Acknowledging these beliefs, my work will always have its origins in nature, if not by the inherent qualities within wool that allow it to felt, then perhaps by the preference for a particular line or form found only in the natural world. Ultimately, the work emerges from my belief that no material is static and that there is beauty to be found in the changing surfaces of objects as they are worn and used.

 

Vallorie Henderson

2015