Foundations in Felt

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Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Getting ready for my new exhibit!

Nashville artists Laura Artates, Rex Boggs, and Margaret Frey open the month long exhibit – Static Dynamic - at the Tennessee Arts Center at Madison on May 29. The exhibit features a variety of two dimensional and three dimensional pieces, in multi-mediums ranging from fiber to pen-and-ink to photography.
An opening reception for the exhibit will be at 6:30 pm on Saturday, June 9 in the lobby of the Arts Center at 403 Gallatin Road, South, Madison. The free reception, with refreshments provided by Provence Breads and Café, will be a chance for the public to meet the artists. Live entertainment will be provided by Paul and Kim Caudell (
Boggs and Frey are returning to the Arts Center at Madison for the 2007 season after exhibiting in 2006. Artates, who recently participated in the Tennessee Association of Craft Artist show in Centennial Park, is presenting her first show at the north Nashville venue. All are members of the Tennessee Artist Guild.
Artates takes her background in the traditional textile arts of knitting, weaving, spinning, and felting in a new direction by combining these techniques, along with embroidery, beading and stitching to craft one-of-a-kind bags, wearables, and artwork. Merino wool is the primary material, with the frequent addition of silk fibers and beads of glass and natural materials. Other types of wool, as well as llama, alpaca, mohair, angora, are often incorporated into the work.
“The techniques of felt-making, spinning, and weaving have been used for thousands of years to clothe, shelter, and adorn. My work provides a palpable connection to the artisans of the past, while creatively exploring new ways to combine techniques that speak to modern aesthetics” Artates said of her work.
In commenting on this series, Frey says of her work. “Art communicates. At its very core, it brings an idea from one person’s head and hands to another’s eyes. Whenever I am inspired to draw, there’s an issue I want to examine, or a story I want to tell, or a moment I want to share. This ‘comic’ series explores the notion that art tells a story in a literal way,” Her exhibit will include many examples of her unique pen-and-ink illustration style.
“Photography has been a lifelong passion. Since I picked up my first camera, I was intrigued by the capacity of film to capture moments of time and place, and to focus the viewer’s eye on those aspects that the photographer chose to enhance,” Boggs says of his primary artistic tool.
“No other medium so delicately balances its function as both an exact and unflinching mirror of reality and an artistic expression of the photographers themselves. As a photographer explores the world, their work becomes both historical record and personal journal,” the award winning photographer continued.
Boggs has exhibited at numerous venues in Nashville including Untitled, the Plowhaus Artist Cooperative, with the Society of Nashville Art Photographers, in Centennial Park and with Nashville Photography Club, where he serves on the board of directors. He is also vice-chairman of the Tennessee Artist Guild.
The Tennessee Arts Center at Madison ( is a cooperative of artists at all levels. The Center just completed an exterior renovation as part of a plan to restore the gallery in the former Madison Theater to its original grandeur of the 1940’s and 50’s. The non-profit Center recently celebrated its fifth anniversary.
Taking a street level approach the Tennessee Artist Guild that operates the center at Madison promotes the efforts of all artists – new and well seasoned – by providing studio and exhibit space along with expertise. The Center serves as a anchor for the renovation of Main Street Madison.
Static Dynamic opens on May 29 and runs until June 24. The artist reception is free at 6:30 pm on Saturday, June 9, featuring live music and food.
For more information about the exhibit or other programs at the Tennessee Arts Center at Madison contact Tennessee Artist Guild executive director Vickie Frazier at (615) 868-8000. The galleries hours are 10:30 am till 2 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, and from 10:30 am. Till 6 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. The gallery is free and open to the public.



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