WHO: Philadelphia artists Cindy Friedman, Amy Orr, Leslie Pontz, Emily Richardson, Lonni Rossi and Deborah Schwartzman
WHAT: "At the Cutting Edge: The State of the Art Quilt" exhibition
WHERE: Arthur Ross Gallery, Furness Library Building, University of Pennsylvania, 220 S. 34th Street.
WHEN: June 15 through July 28, 2002.
"At the Cutting Edge" explores recent works by six Philadelphia artists in a range of techniques exemplify the diversity and sophistication of contemporary fabric artists and the fine art of quiltmaking. Varying techniques inspired by graphic design and typography or using hand-painted or dye-painted fabrics, found objects and recycled everyday materials offer multiple perspectives that reinterpret this tradition.
Cindy Friedman has spent 20 years focused on textiles in the quilt and the fashion-design world. She is intrigued by human forms and interactions with man-made environments, often geometric in nature. Her nationally exhibited work can be found in private collections and locally in the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Infectious Disease Clinic and the Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House.
Amy Orr's work contrasts decorative needlework traditions with contemporary materials and concepts. She uses the framework and historic context of quiltmaking to explore American social patterns and themes. Orr's work celebrates pleasure, escape, obsession and excess, and her view is usually humorous and hopeful. She is currently the Chair of the Rosemont College Art Department.
Leslie Pontz pushes the envelope using quilting techniques to create non-traditional fiber art, weaving drawings and fabric together. Pontz has been the recipient of two grants from the National Endowment for the Arts through the Pennsylvania Council of the Arts as an artist-in-residence. She is a co-founder of ArtQuilts at the Sedgwick, a nationally acclaimed East Coast venue for the exhibition of art quilts.
Emily Richardson's abstract compositions of painted silks and delicate hand stitching have been exhibited in Europe and throughout the U.S. Her work is included in the collections of the American Craft Museum, Comcast Corporation and the Pew Charitable Trust and appears in numerous publications including "The Art Quilt" by Robert Shaw. She is the recipient of the Leeway Foundation Award for Excellence in Fiberarts.
Lonni Rossi, a graphic designer and fiber artist, creates abstract, typographically motivated and multi-processed artcloth. Her quiltwork focuses on the expression of inner emotions and spiritual journeys, combining her one-of-a-kind fabrics with intense machine embroidery and quilting. Rossi's work has appeared in many national exhibits and hangs in museums and private collections.
Deborah Schwartzman has received recognition in nationally juried exhibitions, and her art quilts are installed in galleries, private collections and institutions, including the Crozer Cancer Center in Delaware County, Pa. Her work is inspired by images found in nature, distinguished by saturated color and enhanced by intricate machine and hand quilting. She is the Director of "ArtQuilts at the Sedgwick", a nationally juried annual show in Philadelphia.
Gallery Hours are weekdays 10 a.m.-5 p.m., weekends noon-5 p.m., closed Mondays. For more information contact the gallery office at 215-898-1479 or www.upenn.edu/ARG/