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Moth with Slow Cast Detail, 2019, Hand woven textile, hand dyed canvas and wool, linen threads, hand twisted and braided ropes, wax, oil paint, 64” x 104”
Art by Julia Bland http://juliabland.net/works

I’ve always loved the intricacy of highly textured things, in art as well as in the natural world, like tree bark, fungi, and moss. And I’ve always been intrigued by what makes highly textured things so satisfying to the eye, even when we cannot touch them.

My home studio features the highly intricate and textured art from the San Blas islands of Panama, thick layers of colored fabric that’s been cut away to reveal parts of the fabric beneath, and then sewn with such tiny hand-stitches you can barely see them.

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Another textile artwork in my studio comes from Sierra, Peru, depicting a village scene with stuffed doll-like stuffed figures. These I can touch, but I don’t need to, to feel them, to appreciate the depth and texture.

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So it’s not surprising I was drawn to the work of Julie Bland and other textile artists. Julia’s work is highly abstract and and fuses together several mediums and techniques to create intricate collages: stitching, weaving, braiding, cutting, painting. Some of her artwork is deeply textured, others delicate and almost ethereal.

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Art by Julia Bland
Art by Julia Bland
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Art by Julia Bland

Textile is one of the most ancient arts, and most often it’s women who create it. For practical as well as aesthetic reasons. We love to feel what we wear, and we love to feel what we see, and texture is what makes that possible. Touching is so elemental, and so satisfying, even when the eye alone is doing the touching, as we are doing when viewing the artwork on this page.

I hope you find it as satisfying as I do.