Back in 2010 at the Pompidou Centre in Paris, and a few years earlier at the museum of Arts and Design in NYC the soft and textile arts had their moments of glory. From Pricked extreme embroidery 2008, radical lace and subversive knitting 2007 both at the Museum of Are and Design to the French styles Elles in 2010, the domestic arts gone awry were honored.
There are many fabulous artists demanding attention but one I discovered recently tugs at my heart strings for her discretionary admittance to doing art as a way of escaping her four children.
Today in her 80s, much of Hessie’s fibre art perished in the damp barn in Normandy where she created and stocked her work. Hailing from America and of mixed Cuban & African American heritage, this process artist found her way to France in the late 1970s, where she long ago settled.
Working with paper and textile and recycled bits and pieces, creating what some might call a poor art, Hessie remains an important figure of the textile arts illuminating how the domestic may usurp its own routines.