Material Inspiration

Don't you love it when an artist uses unusual and intriguing materials that completely surprise and enchant? So it is with this installation by Caroline Lathan-Stiefel at the Mason Gross Gallery at Rutgers University. I have seen Lathan-Steifel's work in magazines but never up close, and what she does with a pipe cleaner is simply stunning.

Lathan-Stiefel makes me want to push the envelope with other materials. too. (Like my sister ACN artist Rayna Gillman does with old kitchen tools and printing and soy on fabric.) Perhaps this work will inspire my garments for this year's FASA Runway Show. Can't you imagine an entire ensemble or two constructed with similar techniques and materials?


Interesting enough, just up the street from the art school's gallery, and at another Rutger's art must-see, the Jane Voorhees Zimmerli Art Museum, is a work with similar linear interest. Russian abstract expressionist artist -- nonconformist, though apolitical-- Evgenii Mikhnov-Voitenko in this undated work, an untitled oil on canvas, was working with a similar vocabulary of shape and line. Here's the detail, then the entire work. I love how the synchronicity of creativity speaks across oceans, decades and even the choice of media.