There will be an Art Wall Reception for artist Catherine Niessink on Sunday March 17 at 12:15 p.m. in The Commons.

Artist Statement
I enjoy working with my hands and felting is most satisfying. Wool is the material that is used for felting–since wool shrinks when wet and ‘felted’ together, and when the hooks in the wool connect to each other, it becomes a permanent fabric.

There are various kinds of wool used, depending on the sheep, alpaca, goat or animal from which you get wool.

The coats, skirt, and scarves are Nuno felting–a combination of Merino wool, soap, and silk which is nice against the skin, and lightweight. The three-dimensional objects are wet felting–just wool, soap, and water. Birds’ nests are just so cool and make a good surface for decoration.

I prefer felting on a flat surface. Flat felting allows for working a lot more surface decoration into the fabric, and I love this aspect of felting.

I don’t usually start out with a picture in mind. I start out with a color in mind, and lay out the foundation. Then I go looking in my ‘stash’ of other wool, ribbon, bits and pieces of silk, doilies, and add them onto the foundation. I like working this way because I don’t have to plan out everything. I am an instinctual colorist, and like to just play with the colors and materials.

Most of the pieces were made in workshops led by local master felter Dawn Edwards (Felt-So-Right) or international teachers that she brought to our area.

–Catherine Niessink

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