Artist research – Susan Brubaker Knapp

In effect this is a follow in piece of research influenced by the close up botannical photographs of LuAnn Ostergaard.  I discovered the work of Susan Brubaker Knapp who is a former graphic designer but now works as a teacher, author, designer and fibre artist.

Ms Knapp’s works can be seen at:  http://www.bluemoonriver.com/quilts.html and also http://www.bluemoonriver.com/fiber-art.html

Ms Knapp’s works are often developed from macro photographs of flowers into innovative art quilts that embrace the colours of the petals and blooms …. these quilts are described on textileartist.org as having colour fields which immediately reminds me of the work of Mark Rothko but Ms Knapp’s colour fields interact with each other as they overlap to create a vibrancy and life in a very different format.

I am intrigued by the use of quilting to add the textural elements to the close up petals – this quilting is deceptively simply but at the same time you understand there is a graphic design background.  I also like the bold use of colour – there is often a tendency in quilting to use printed fabrics but I like the use of solids when combined with the aforementioned quilting to create those patterns and rhythms that bring a dynamism to the pieces produced.

Ms Knapp also produces a range of Fiber art pieces which are mixed media in creation but are still quilts – this is particularly interesting as I find the use of acrylic paint, additional threads couched on, beads and a variety of hand-dyed fabrics can take a quilt to another level.  Art quilts are still in the long tradition of quilting relatively new and there are traditional quilters who do not like the use of machines never mind the innovations which are breaking through and have become a textile art genre in their own right but it is these art quilts that I find the most exciting.

With regards to how I this quilter/textile artist may influence my own work – it is simple as it goes back to the fact that I mentioned in my blog on LuAnn Ostergaard’s photographs that I like taking close up or even macro photographs of flowers and plants myself and can now see a way of developing those images into textile art works.  This has given me a way forward with my love of quilting too – I had felt that I was moving away from it due to my studies but now find myself wanting to incorporate quilting again into my work in some element.

BIBLIOGRAPHY:

Blue Moon River.  (date unknown).  Susan Brubaker Knapp [online].  [Date accessed:  July 2017].  Available from:  http://www.bluemoonriver.com/index.html

TextileArtist.org. 2016.  Floral Textile artists – textile artists inspired by flowers [online].  [Date accessed:  July 2017].  Available from:  http://www.textileartist.org/textile-artists-inspired-by-flowers/

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