Saturday, March 7, 2015

Selfie and @YrImaginaryDog, hanging out at IMC Lab and Gallery in NYC

The opening for Reach Out and Touch Me was fun. It was one of the coldest nights of the year. Nevertheless, many friends showed up, surprising me.

Above is my soft sculpture "family," Selfie, @YrImaginaryDog and her iPhone watching a stop motion video of me embroidering Selfie's and @YrImaginaryDog's tweets on Selfie. 

The exhibit is up through March 18th at IMC Lab, 56 W 22nd Street near 6th Ave in NYC. Get in touch if you'd like to visit!

In the meantime, stay tuned for news of my BAC-sponsored Native/Immigrant City project. As for me, I'm off to art fairs today. I can't wait for Spring Break!

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Winter cheer - Thursday opening @IMCLabGallery

Dear blog readers,

Yes, it's cold. Yes, I am suffering from season-long sinus congestion. I'm giving up dairy. For real, this time. It's going to be hard. I will miss Greek yogurt more than I can say. I am hoping coconut yogurt (which is basically a sugary custard) will suffice. Who am I kidding? I can't even keep a straight face typing this.

Anyway, enough about me. 

Thanks to IMC Lab & Gallery, the opening for my solo show, the culmination of my Co-Create Residency, is this Thursday. Details below on the invitation co-designed with James Tunick, Residency co-director and technology guru.

I can't wait! If you're in the NYC area, please come by!

Saturday, January 31, 2015

It's been a long, cold, lonely winter

As the Beatles sang in "Here Comes the Sun," it HAS been a long, cold, lonely winter. In my case, not terribly lonely, as I teach 4-6 times a week and am surrounded by students ages 6 - 75, so I very often have company and constant conversation.

I've been keeping myself busy, getting ready for an upcoming solo show (opening night Thursday, 2/19!) at IMC Lab and Gallery in Manhattan, 56 West 22nd Street, 6th Floor. I've been making stop motion videos to add texture and elucidate some of the narratives embroidered on my hand held and life sized selfies. Here is a sneak peak of one stop motion piece:

Monday, December 22, 2014

Breastplates, Templates: Weaving On and OffLoom (On and off roading for textiles)

To date, I've devoted this blog to my embroidery projects, giving an inside view to my thought and physical art making processes. I may not have mentioned that I'm also a weaver?

Lately, I'm experimenting with using furniture in my house to create makeshift looms, varying tension of the warp (vertical) yarns to create mixed textures, feels and effects across a fabric. This "breast plate," pictured above, is irregularly shaped, like an animal skin.

Our clothes are a second skin. They are part of how we share and shape our identities. In this selfie (selfish), digital age, in which we obsessively pose and posture who and how we are publicly, incorporating second skins into my selfie creations seems a propos. For me, textiles have an inherent narrative and are a language. My goal as an artist is to use them to shape and share stories I infer, overhear and imagine. While I most often use embroidery, I am finding weaving an important additional tool. I am weaving, in part, to create clothing and environments for my almost life-sized, selfie-in-progress.

I'm excited to continue my circular weaving/apartment-as-loom experiments. They let me know that I could make fabric anywhere in any environment.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Selfie with @YrImaginaryDog

Fearing that Selfie might get lonely, I made her a dog, @YrImaginaryDog, who provides unsolicited advice via Twitter to @EmbroideryPoems. Follow us to be part of the conversation and watch the development of these narrative, interactive sculptures, making an appearance in your NYC neighborhood soon!

Sunday, November 30, 2014


Starting something new: life-sized (or almost life-sized) fabric figures with embroidered tweets. I'm about to start weaving fabric with which to clothe her. Stay tuned.

Selfi(ie). 2014. Paint and embroidery on
stuffed and sewn fabric.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Bearded Brooklyn

What do trends in facial hair say about the status quo? Beards are in in Brooklyn. Just in time for winter.

Watercolor and embroidery on fabric. 2014 by Iviva Olenick