Happy Labor Day!
I’d like to feature the work of Tiff Manuell, an artist based out of South Australia. Her work caught my eye on Instagram a few months ago because of her process. She paints on her material either flat on a table or mounted on a wall, depending on the goal, and then forms the material into bags and accessories. She also collages with the painted material in such a lovely, organic, matisse-like way. The colors are bold and bright, the patterns unexpected, and the functional items just an absolutely delightful conclusion to the emotion that must go into these paintings. I responded so much to Manuell’s work because I could see this being such an amazing way to honor work by Maggie, Emma, Sian, or Stephen- those who don’t always have a specific vision but enjoy applying paint to canvas.
I love the idea of someone carrying around an original piece of work by one of the Innisfree artists, and while the printmaking we do is definitely expressive and fun there’s something so joyful about showcasing a hand-painted fiber in this way. I hope you enjoy Manuell’s work as much as I do. She says on her home page “I am inspired everyday by all sorts of things, i can never precisely tell what it is but i have a hard time planning or controlling it which is what I like about this project. I want it to be spontaneous and to move quickly, for it not to be restrained by typical industry formats but more organic in its evolution.”
Here’s to moving spontaneously and not restricting ourselves to what someone else thinks of as beautiful! I’ve been listening to the podcast “On Being” lately as suggested to me by a friend, and one of the episodes was an interview of Father Greg Boyle, Executive Director of Homeboy Industries which is a company that seeks to get LA gang members off the streets and into productive jobs. He says “Here is what we seek: a compassion that can stand in awe of what [the poor] have to carry rather than stand in judgment at how they carry it.” While we’re not talking about the poor, I think it’s such a cool idea to talk about being in awe of what the Innisfree artists carry-or what they have to offer, which is their art-rather than judging how they carry themselves. I’m often in awe of what these guys create and have no trouble moving past how they carry themselves because of the relationship we’ve already built, but I hope that those who first encounter this population through their art can see the true heart and soul and honesty that goes into creating it.