Artist’s Dreamlike Thread Drawings Bloom in Olin Gallery

Created: March 1, 2016
Last Updated: July 16, 2020

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WASHINGTON, PA (March 1, 2016)—Washington & Jefferson College’s (W&J) next Olin Fine Art Gallery opening will feature the delicate and dreamlike thread drawings of Toronto-based artist Amanda McCavour.

The opening reception and artist talk begins March 11 at 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. and McCavour’s artwork will be in Olin until April 3. McCavour will present an installation entitled”Pink Field, Blue Fog,” part of her “Neon Bloom” series, which will consist a suspended field of neon pink flowers with blue embroidered “Spirographs” to create a large colorful environment.

“Using ideas around the space of the garden, as well as silk flowers, this piece is a new installation/embroidery work based on an imagined and abstracted field of flowers,” said McCavour. “The large installation work is growing and will be comprised of thousands of these pieces installed on the floor of the gallery creating a field of flowers and a field of color. Visitors would be able to walk through the colorful field through paths, and would be surrounded by the work, their movement also being controlled by the piece.”

By using only a sewing machine, water soluble fabric, and thread McCavour creates colorful images through this unique art medium, which McCavour chose because of her interest in thread’s properties of delicacy, line, and touch.

“I like thread’s vulnerability. Creating images and installations out of embroidered parts allows me to create ephemeral pieces that are both in a space but also seemingly on the verge of not being there,” said McCavour. “My interest in embroidery stems from an interest in line. I am interested and excited by the potential thread has to create both readable images and abstract images … We feel [fibers] often, they are right next to our skin when we are wearing clothes. I like how when I use an embroidered image that this might be in the back of people’s minds, that looking at an embroidered piece also becomes about this memory of touch, of touching something soft, of what the piece might feel like if you were to touch it.”

The accumulation of time and material, and the hard work that McCavour puts into her artwork, is another aspect that she enjoys about thread drawing.

“Spending lots of time at a sewing machine and building up the embroidered thread pieces informs my work as well.  The accumulation of thread, which is what holds the pieces together, is accompanied by an accumulation of time,” said McCavour.

McCavour lives and works in Toronto, Canada. She received her MFA from Temple University, Philadelphia, PA and her BFA from York University, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

**All Olin Fine Art Gallery events and exhibitions are free and open to the public. The Gallery is open seven days a week from noon to 7 p.m. during exhibitions, and is closed during college breaks. The Gallery is in Olin Fine Arts Center at 285 East Wheeling Street, Washington, Pa. 15301.

About Washington & Jefferson College

Washington & Jefferson College, located in Washington, Pa., is a selective liberal arts college founded in 1781. Committed to providing each of its students with the highest-quality undergraduate education available, W&J offers a traditional arts and sciences curriculum emphasizing interdisciplinary study and independent study work. For more information about W&J, visit www.washjeff.edu, or call 888-W-AND-JAY.

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