Mixed Media , 5" x 4".
Manipulating fiber as line is one of the oldest human occupations. It began with twining or plaiting plant materials into containers and was soon followed by spinning fiber into thread. The flexible line of thread was woven into cloth that was sewn into covering and clothing. In addition to wrapping these woven lines around our bodies to define our style, we have used line to define our space in architecture, on highways, in home furnishings, entertainment, and advertising.
We form lines with our bodies as we wait, dance, sing, play. We even speak of our ancestors as our lineage. We transmit power through lines, grids, linear beams of particles, and even words: recognizable patterns of lines on paper.
We begin drawing with our fingers, in our food as babies. Our awkward attempts are refined as we learn to print and then write in cursive. So closely connected are we to making lines that our character can be read in our handwriting.
I have been intimately involved with line through drawing, weaving, and writing.
Most recently I have been working with thread as line by making hand-stitched drawings on paper that I collectively refer to as “Threadlines.”I begin by making large holes in paper with an industrial sewing machine spontaneously outlining shapes as I move the paper under the presser foot. The infill drawing is done by hand without any prior sketching.
Pulling a thread taut, I hold a line in space; stitching in and out of paper I create a relief, both physical and metaphorical. I enjoy the contrast of the industrial perforation with the delicate hand work; the loud, clashing speed of the one process with the silent, meditative pace of the other.
When I work with thread and paper I explore not only scale, texture, depth, color, and form but I also become the thread that connects my past to my present, and marks my future.
Dolores S. Slowinski