High Fiber Diet
The textile artist group “High Fiber Diet” will display its work at the MHCC Visual Arts Gallery from Monday through Nov. 21.
High Fiber Diet originated about 25 years ago, and is a smaller group that operates within the Columbia Fiber Arts Guild.
Fiber art is an art form that uses materials such as yarn and fabric, and is more focused on the artistic expression and process of creating the art rather than the practical use.
The group’s art has been exhibited in Roseburg, The Dalles, Coos Bay, Eugene, Corvallis, Portland, and Vancouver and also has been shown in Australia, Europe and South America.
The MHCC show will feature some clothing, fiber vessels, and some weaving, but the main attraction will be quilts. “Come and take a look at what some quilting ladies are doing that is very, ‘Not your grandmother’s quilts,’” said Gerrie Congdon, whose work will be shown.
The theme for the Mt. Hood show is “Rhythm and Hues.”
Congdon, a longtime textile enthusiast, creates quilts inspired by elements of nature.
She said she realized her passion for quilting while watching TV. “I saw a show about quilts that were like paintings you could hang on the wall and my mind went spinning and I just thought, ‘Oh, this is what I wanna do,’ ” she said.
Congdon said she enjoys creating “a kind of visual fabric landscape” rather than sending a message. Her work is most influenced by elements from nature. “I sort of then do an abstraction of that,” she said.
Three of her pieces will be showcased at the MHCC exhibit. One is called “Prairie Circles,” in which she used hand-dyed fabrics to create an interpretation of an aerial photograph of irrigation equipment on the prairie.
Another work is called “Urban Sunlight,” which has material that was manipulated through a process called “discharging” – where chemicals are used to remove dye, to form patterns and create some fabrics that look “like windows of buildings with light reflecting through them,” Congdon said.
The third piece being shown “is just a fun piece that I call ‘Line Dancing.’ It’s just playing with shapes and lines and color, and the lines kind of dance across the piece,” she said.
Congdon is thrilled about the theme of the exhibit.
“I could just make a ton of pieces fit with that,” she said. “I often use repeating motifs in my work which [are] the rhythms and I love working with color and value, so basically, the work that’s in that show is the kind of thing that I like to do, which is just have fun with color and design.”
Gerrie Congdon is online at www.gericondesigns.com.
Another artist featured, Jill Hoddick, visually inspires unusual rhythm patterns with her quilting.
Two of her works will be on display, both part of a series called “Syncopation,” which is an improvisation technique and a jazz musical term that refers to a flow of rhythm that stresses the unaccented elements of a piece of music.
Hoddick is doing a visual version of syncopation, crafting work that inspires viewers to “feel the movement, and feel the music,” she said.
She said her work is “non-objective in nature” and is not intended to tell a story. Rather, it is meant to stand out and surprise the viewer.
Hoddick retired last year from the University of Portland, where she taught theater and custom design for 35 years. She considers herself a “youngster” in quilting and got into the art form shortly before retiring, and now makes her living from it. “I wasn’t traditionally a quilter. It’s a new vocabulary for me,” she said.
She said she enjoys being in a community of artists, and its “great camaraderie.
“I am pleased to be accepted at MHCC’s Visual Arts center,” she said.
Jill Hoddick is online at www.jillhoddick.com.
Works from High Fiber Diet
may be seen online, at
Columbia Fiber Arts Guild is