In this post, I’d like to showcase just a few of the artists using felt to create what I will call “character” sculptures – creations that tell a story all their own. It would be impossible for me include all of my favorites in a single post, so I’ve chosen just a few to whet your appetite. No doubt I will circle back to this topic at a later date to show you more!
Jezabel Nekranea is a sculptor and illustrator (http://www.nekranea.com/). Her dual talents enable her to seamlessly translate into 3D the pop surreal sensibility I am more used to admiring in paintings. I am totally smitten with her Blue Deer; the leaves that sprout from his antlers perfectly complement those on the ground. Is this a kind of camouflage? The bright colors seem to suggest otherwise, but we only get a peek into this mysterious world, so there is no way to know for sure.
Kit Lane is a non-traditional needle felter and sculptor of “oddjects” (http://www.flickr.com/photos/kitgraphics/). I have long been a fan of her sweetly macabre landscapes and the blithe little creatures that inhabit them. Hers is a sugar-coated world with an undercurrent of darkness, achieving a balance that is tenuous at best. Is the skull simply part of the hillside, or will it snap shut at any moment to devour the unlucky creatures within?
Megan Baehr is the artist behind Nonesuch Garden (http://www.nonesuchgarden.com/). These are two from her ongoing series of “Sproutlings” – anthropomorphic seed-like creatures that bring good luck to your garden. The backstory she has written invests them with their own lore, which is a great catalyst for the imagination and makes the sculptures all the more charming.
Hine Mizushima is an illustrator, needle-felter, crafter, and stop motion video artist (http://www.hinemizushima.com/). Magical maidens, friendly octopi, aliens, and ectoplasms fill her meticulously crafted dioramas. I’ve had the pleasure of seeing her work in person, and they are even more exquisite first hand!
I was fortunate enough to be in a show with all four of these artists plus many more, curated by the superbly talented Lana Crooks (http://lanacrooks.com/), at Clutter Gallery in Beacon, NY. The show is up until May 4th, so if you are in the area I strongly encourage you to check it out. If not, you can see the show online at https://shop.cluttermagazine.com/gallery/241!
Zoe Williams creates needle felt sculptures based on dreams and visions. She lives and works in New York City.