Subversive, Skilled, Sublime: Fiber Art by Women

Lenore Tawney

In the Dark Forest represents the artist’s “open warp” technique. She pulls fiber through the vertical threads (the warp) by hand to create painterly, gestural forms. Lenore Tawney created this work at a crucial transition in her career. In 1957 she moved from Chicago, where she trained as a weaver, to New York City to embrace life as an artist. Her loom became a means to shape new dimensions of fiber art. Here, Tawney achieved the transcendental effect of sunlight filtering through a shadowy forest. The open warp weavings like this one seeded Tawney’s lifelong experimentation with light, scale, and volume, which eventually reached the sky in her Cloud series.