RIDGEFIELD, CT –February 7th, 2013 –Rockwell Art Galleries of Ridgefield breaks away from traditional visions in RENEGADE: The Mavericks of Fabericks exhibits from February 7th –April 13th. The show welcomes original uses of mediums and forms from artists Heidi Lewis Coleman. Peggy Corallo Dembicer, Leslie Giuliani, Melissa Maddonni Haims, Arle Sklar-Weinstein, and Leslie Smith. Their usage of alternative materials brings the viewer in closer, makes the viewer think, wonder, and smile. The public is invited to an opening reception on Thursday February 7th from 5:30-7:30PM. The event is free and open to the public. Rockwell Art and Framing of Ridgefield is located at 470 Main Street, Ridgefield, CT 06877. Phone 203-894-8000.
Peggy Corallo Dembicer is a mixed media artist who creates unique and contemporary artwork. Using her background in textile and fiber arts, she presents a modern take on traditional techniques. She is a self-taught artist, drawn to the fiber arts in particular. Picking up techniques through workshops and experimentation, she has explored weaving in all its forms beginning with her earliest focus on tapestry. Through exhibitions and her associations with galleries, her work has grown and diversified in both style and materials. Recent work incorporates recycled materials and found objects. Peggy often includes beads and specialty papers in her constructs. The work takes its shape through the versatility of weaving, gluing, embroidering, stitching or combining these techniques together with paints, fabric, and polymer clay. She gets her inspirations from the possibilities she sees in everyday things, from brochures to the rusty metal fragments in the street. She considers how things can be interpreted through fiber or embellished with beads and continues to delight us with her playful and original interpretations. She exhibits her work regularly in CT galleries like Gallery on the Green in Canton, Silvermine Art Guild in New Canaan, Artwell in Torrington, and through the West Hartford Art League.
Heidi Lewis Coleman was inspired by the weavings and basketry of the local Indian tribes where she grew up in Central Washington State and took her early influences to heart infusing them into her art. Studies of Indian artifacts and practices have deeply influenced her work in the form of woven pieces. She has further explored this technique by weaving painted paper. By shredding two identically painted sheets horizontally and vertically, she reweaves an image which appears to ripple and vibrate. These textural results add dimension and life to her work which began as a mere one dimensional element.
Melissa Maddonni Haims is a fiber artist based in Philadelphia. She creates knit graffiti, soft sculpture, and large-scale knit + crocheted installations using recycled, reclaimed or rescued textiles. Her career in the arts began in New York City in the mid 1990’s, and life led her back home to Philadelphia in 2004, where she lives with her husband and young daughter. Ms. Haims is an active member at The 3rd Street Gallery and a part of the executive team for FiberPhiladelphia, an international biennial of fiber arts.
Leslie Giuliani has a rather eclectic artistic background. Having graduated with a B.F.A. in drawing and painting, she continued her studies in esoteric art forms including fresco painting, Byzantine icon painting, gold leaf conservation, non silver photographic processes, and encaustic painting. She has worked with textile handcrafts since childhood. Ms. Giuliani is the recipient of an Artist Fellowship Grant for Craft from the Connecticut Commission on Culture and Tourism and her work is represented in the CT state’s art collection.
Arle Sklar-Weinstein has always identified herself as an artist from a very young age, while true inspiration came during a lunch in 1981 after witnessing a faculty colleague hand quilting and appliquéing. The tactile enhancement of stitched fabric in composition combined with the improvisational piecing of fabric while fusing painting with photo imaging concepts opened her art to great endeavors. Investigating new technologies and integrating combinations of materials in non- traditional formats has always been her approach in exhibitions as a painter, printmaker and installation-artist. However, as the sculptor, Jacques Lipchitz said, “No one falls out of the sky, we stand on the shoulders of our history.” Sklar-Weinstein’s “soft paintings” give homage to the artistic heritage of all the inspired, gifted quilters who have preceded us. Her current work employs both visual and physical layering and is represented at ART/PLACE Gallery, Southport, CT and at the Silvermine Guild Arts Center, New Canaan, CT.
Leslie Smith, enchanted by a spinning wheel as a child, has practiced the magical arts of weaving, spinning, dyeing, felt making, basketry, freeform crochet, and rustic woodworking for many years. She has shown her work locally and nationally, and has taught fiber arts workshops, and presented fiber arts and living history programs to students of all ages, in schools, guilds, camps, museums, and at public events. When weaving, she tends to favor the freedom, and intimacy of her simple frame looms over her mechanical looms. She finds inspiration for her work in nature, and finds joy in foraging for new and unexpected materials to work with. A favorite pastime is the study, and contemplation of history, culture, mythology, and gardening. She frequently incorporates symbols of these themes into her work.