Art contemporain, soie et fil fin

Downey Museum of Art, Los Angeles, États-Unis 18/01/1990 - 04/03/1990

An exhibition of works by eleven French and American artists, Contempory Silk As Art organized by the French-based Intex-Art Association in collaboration with the Downey Museum of Art... The show was curated by artist Marie-Anne Ichter.

Throughout history, silk fabric had been used largely by the aristocraty, the nobility, and the Church. The ability to produce lush luminous fabrics from the sheerest gauzes to the heaviest tapestries has imbued silk with a mystery and value still in effect today.

When the artistic revolution in design art occured in the 1960s and 70s, many artists interested in painting on cloth naturally turned to silk as a medium.

The interest of artists reaches beyond the mystique of silk with its luxurious and ancient traditions. Many artists have become interested in the particular qualities of the material : its luminous surface, its rich coloration in dyeing; its flexibility and drape. Artists have begun working with other fibers such as viscose rayon and other synthetics which would produce similar qualities while adding such attributes as durability, strength, and texture.

In this time of eclecticism, more and more fiber artists are seeking to achieve the desired effect of their vision rather than remaining purists to a particular material or technique. This eclecticism has opened up the field in a rich and creative way. Even though silk has not been used by all the artists in this exhibition, it is the love affair with silk and the desire to emulate its unique qualities which have prompted their choice of fabric.

Nicole & Thieri Foulc

Passers-by don't pass. They are suspended in thei movement, in their lightness, in their organza transparency. The others, the visitors around them - the heavy ones, the opaque, those who appear real as they pass by - just pass.

Extracts from "Contemporary silk as Art" by Bernice Colman, Surface design magazine, Fall 1990.