During the eight weeks of 'simply irRESISTible' we'll focus on individual artists here on our blog. Every week, three artists will be featured. Today, we're pleased to introduce to you: Janet Hadingham from Wayland, MA.
About the Piece: This piece is the result of a science experiment of sorts. I had a theory that string could act, not only as a resist, but as a mark-making tool,… that is, if I were to load the string with dye prior to using it to bind the fabric around the pole — in this case, a length of flexible vinyl duct, one of my favorite improvised tools because it leaves wavy lines suggesting ripples on water.
About the Piece: On this length of dupion silk I used a similar set of folds and bindings for each stage of dyeing. I wanted the patterning from each layer to move in generally the same direction. After the third dye bath, I hung up the piece so that I could stand back and have a good long look at it. As I had hoped, the lines appeared to radiate from a central point somewhere off to the left of the piece, suggesting a larger rosette, only part of which was visible. Then it struck me: the memory of sitting inside the chapel at Mount Holyoke College, where soft afternoon light was filtering through the magnificent rose window.
Artist Statement/Biography: My work is a blend of ancient techniques and chance discoveries. I usually start by manipulating the cloth, using physical resist processes - binding, clamping, wrapping- derived from the Japanese shibori tradition. Compelled to innovate, I'm always on the look-out for discarded objects to clamp within the folds of my cloth, wondering what ghostly "resist" image it might leave behind.
I work in layers to build up color and pattern. Each piece goes through many stages, until I arrive at that moment when the cloth tells me it is finished. Washing out the dye and unraveling the wet fabric comes with the thrill of unwrapping a gift. I'm always surprised and mystified that an object so utilitarian as a C-clamp can leave so delicate a mark, like moth wings, repeating rhythmically through the folds.