TAFA: The Textile and Fiber Art List

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Fraser Smith: Turning Wood Into Textiles

"Floating"(Detail) by Fraser Smith
Carved wood & Watercolor
65" x 42" x 4"

Wow!  What a beautiful quilt!  Right?  Hmmmmmm......  Wait a minute!  It's wood!  Fraser Smith transforms wood into lifelike quilts, clothing and textiles.  So, is he a carver?  A painter?  A textile artist?  How about all three?

I first saw Fraser's work here in Paducah at the Quilt Museum.  My parents were in town and we stood in front of his piece, stunned.  My father had a stint as an amateur carver and he quietly stared disbelievingly at the quilt we were looking at.  Surely it was a quilt!

 "Floating" by Fraser Smith
Carved wood & Watercolor
65" x 42" x 4"

The quilt above is not the same one as the one we saw, yet it captures the same qualities of a textile hanging on the wall.  There is a small piece of wood near the quilt which unbelievers can fondle.  If you stand close to the piece and peer behind it, you see the natural wood.  

" The First Quilted Robe of the Reclusive Eccentric
by Fraser Smith
Carved wood, silk dyes & mixed media, 57" x 25" x 4", 2010
Surely, then, if these are made out of wood, they would be considered carvings, right?  Well, without Fraser's mastery of his painting skills, the illusion would fail.  And, without having an intimate understanding of how fiber behaves when it is sewn, draped, dyed, quilted....  Fraser would not be able to transform the wood and make it alive.  So, in my mind's eye, he has to be all three: carver, painter and textile artist.  Like Midas turning the ordinary into gold, Fraser Smith turns wood into treasure!

Visit his website for more of these beautiful pieces.
All images have been used with permission of the artist.
 Detail of a Quilted Tallit by Fraser Smith



1 comment:

  1. Exceptional work. Happy to see that you've Blogged this very talented artist.


“Sing like no one's listening, love like you've never been hurt, dance like nobody's watching, and live like it's heaven on earth.”

“Whatever you say, say it with conviction.”

(Both by the master, Mark Twain)

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