The batik Lower Saluda River maps the park at Saluda Shoals, Columbia, South Carolina. Indigenous birds silhouette the silk.
Celie Dailey’s 6-page spread in the latest Fiber Art Now issue is beautiful. “Mary Edna Fraser: Above the Earth” coincides with a book she has written, with the editor now at University of South Carolina Press. Celie has managed my artistic career for the past 6 years and brought my work to a worldwide audience. I don’t know what I’d do without her. Through her filmmaking, photography and writing, she has been able to intimately observe my techniques and that’s really nice for an older artist. For my retirement, I plan to teach around the world using Celie’s professional insights.
The article and the upcoming book both feature the batik, Above Mobile Bay, which is to be installed at the new Maritime Museum of the Gulf of Mexico in Mobile, AL.
I’m eternally grateful to Susan Pearlstine for commissioning me to create a work of art which hides her big screen TV. This site-specific piece is the first time that I’ve made my art move, thanks to Brent Havens. The main panel on the left, which covers the screen, is a combination of an aerial view and an on-location shoot from the ground. The trees feel like they’re in a mysterious creek and the Spanish moss gives the batik an atmospheric texture. Two side-by-side verticals are stationary on the right and show a satellite image of Chadwick Road, Charleston. Once the square panel moves behind the two verticals, it makes a whole new work of art. Thanks to Lauren Sanchez, Mark Sloan and Reggie Gibson for helping me with the process of design.
GulfQuest, a new maritime museum in Mobile, Alabama set to open in 2013, has commissioned a batik on silk installation for their atrium. Architectural firm Lyons/Zaremba designed the art to be three bowed panels suspended above viewer in the shape of ship’s sails. Seven sections must be waxed and dyed separately then sewn together and seamed with bias cuts to complete the design. Mary Edna is excited to be on her second dye bath of the right panel today. The final art work will be about 21 feet tall and 30 feet wide.
Over 180 hours of woman-power were required to execute the central section. Frank Zaremba, pictured below, came for a visit to see the progress of the art last week.
Photograph by Celie Dailey.
Located in Raleigh, the NC Museum of Natural Sciences hosted the initial Our Expanding Oceans collaborative exhibition, as well as a smaller Aerial Inspirations show in their Nature Art Gallery, in 2011. Now Mary Edna’s art will be a part of their permanent collection with her newly completed commission, Holden Beach. Please click to enlarge this image.
Holden Beach, North Carolina, batik on silk, 92″ x 34.75″
Architect Glenn Keyes and his wife Cyndy commissioned a diptych batik of kimono silk for the home. Glenn designed the lovely space. The batik was requested to be rendered in blues, greys, tans, greens, some yellow, red, purple, and copper with no pinks or oranges to accommodate the space. I took lots of photographs of their natural surroundings and was able to perceive the way this landscape would look as if from the air. The photographs led me in both color way and design. I had full freedom to create beautiful art as the clients trusted me. We were both totally happy with the installation. I waxed out a moon behind a dense rainfall, inspired by the batik “Rainy Night” that the Keyes saw hanging in my studio.
Rainy Night Whispering Marsh