Black Rock Desert AIR

Black Rock Desert/High Rock Canyon Artist-in-Residence 2015

One of the most striking features of the Black Rock Desert National Conservation Area is its vastness: wide-open spaces, seas of sagebrush, colorful rocky mountains, and desert that is so remote you would not see another human being for days. To some, this arid landscape is barren and dead, but to an artist it can sing with the beauty of nature, form, color, and light.

My art focuses on the traditional craft of knitting, bringing it up to a fine art that can echo a landscape as beautifully as a painting. As an artist-in-residence for Black Rock Desert/High Rock Canyon National Conservation Area, I reveled in the vastness of the desert, it was overwhelming and beautiful. It was laid out around me and enveloped me at the same time. During my tenure in the spring of 2015 I felt that I was wrapped in Black Rock Desert. This became my theme for the artwork I created; wearable art that allows you to wrap yourself in Black Rock Desert.

As a knitting and textile artist, my work has a close affinity to the land. My art echoes the geography of place; a type of knitting terroir that brings my surroundings into the forefront of my life. Many of my works focus on interpreting the science, geography, and biology of an ecosystem within the traditional craft of knitting. And because of this study and practice, I have come to hone my thinking about environmentalism, conservation, and preservation of the land.

The act of creating something so entwined with the land itself sparks a stewardship and urge to conserve that land. I hope that others will be inspired to enjoy, conserve, and steward the Black Rock Desert National Conservation Area through my art. To help accomplish this, part of my practice entailed creating patterns so other people can make their own piece of wearable art. desert•wraps is the compilation of these patterns.

Thanks to Friends of Black Rock/High Rock for their support during the residency. All patterns are for sale and can be found here on Ravelry.


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