Friday, April 20, 2012

Artist Profile: Virginia Spiegel

Virginia A. Spiegel
Byron, IL

1. What other ideas for this theme "rituals" did you have? I would like to say I had many ideas, but actually as soon as I heard the theme of rituals I knew that the artwork needed to be about RockTime.

2.  Are you involved in any community or group projects where you donate your work?  If yes, what project or projects?  I am the founder of Fiberart For A Cause, raising over $220,000 since 2005 for the American Cancer Society through the generosity of fiber artists and patrons.

3.  Do you belong to a small group of like-minded artists?  No.  I have tried in the past, but I have my own idiosyncratic work schedule with several months spent outside the studio each year.

4.  Are you a member of a professional art organization, such as SAQA?  I am a proud Professional Artist Member of SAQA and belong to Surface Design Association as well.

5.  What is your favorite palette of colors that you use in your work?  Name 5. Your 5 least favorite colors?  I usually work in saturated colors, but that is mainly due to painting my own fabrics and the type of paint I use.  I have no favorite or least fav colors as I let the artwork determine what is needed and, to some extent, what fabrics I have already painted. I can’t think of a time that I stopped and painted fabric in order to continue on an artwork in progress. Limiting my choices helps me focus on the message I am trying to convey in an artwork.

6.  Describe your creative work space in 20 words or less.  Are you messy or tidy?  Crowded. Messy, then clean, then messy. Fabric everywhere, drawers of thread, beloved Bernina.

7.  What is your creative process?  I think about a topic, research it, write a one sentence statement of purpose for the series or artwork, and then let the design organically occur. If I knew how an artwork was going to turn out, I wouldn’t even want to start it.

8.   Is there a particular object or shape that shows up repeatedly in your work?  Why? I have a photo taken by sister that shows me with a red mug in my hand, wearing my fav blue shirt and bandana, sitting on a rock, and just looking at the water.  I used that image in RockTime and have used in in other artwork.  It’s an image I hope to look at for the rest of my life as it transports me to a place, physically and mentally, where I want to be and I hope resonates with viewers.

9.   If you had to choose a favorite artist from another media, who would it be, and why? Helen Frankenthaler.  A woman artist who depicted nature in ways I admire.

10.  Have you written a book related to Art Quilts and Quilting or have an instructional DVD?  If so, can you tell us the title or titles? I have created a book of essays and photographs about being a fiber artist and living a creative life.  “Wild at the Edges:  Inspiration from a Creative Life” is available from Blurb Books.

11.  Do you make art full time?  I consider myself a fulltime artist even though for long periods of time I am either wilderness canoeing/camping, out landscaping my one acre yard, or traveling.  I consider all these activities to feed my art.  Even if I’m not in my studio making fiber art, I am always taking photographs which I consider to be a very complimentary art form in that it forces me to always be looking, to always be seeing.

12.  What is your most thrilling news to date in relation to your art quilt life?  The first success is always the best. Believe it or not, the first art quilt I ever entered in an exhibit was a garden-themed exhibit at International Quilt Festival in Houston.  They called me at work with an acceptance. I actually screamed out loud and scared the office half to death.  I should have known then that my academic career was doomed.

1 comment:

  1. Virginia, you are one of my contemporary heroes, both as a human being and in the world of art. Thanks for an interesting interview!


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