Art Bets: “Art/Sewn” at Asheville Museum of Art

Women are no strangers to the history of sewing in art, and this show of 11 nationally acclaimed female artists acknowledges that history. However, the different approaches to thread as a medium range from the traditional to the experimental, producing a compelling exhibition. Janet Henry’s toy dolls or “tchotchkes” use thread to hold the photographic and plastic elements together. Other artists like Emily Barletta sew directly onto paper; her red thread compositions create textures and motion in order to “filter pain out of my body through my hands.” Gina Phillips’ installation, “Life Lasagna,” occupies an entire room with faces, eagles, teeth and abstract forms packed with fabric layers and machine-sewn thread, based on imagery from her rural Kentucky upbringing. The variety of works also includes quilts, 3-D diorama-style pieces and sculptural forms made from industrial wool. Art/Sewn hangs at the Asheville Museum of Art through Jan. 6. Admission is $8 for non-members, free on the first Wednesday of each month.

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