Posted on November 14, 2017
Cedar driftwood (designed and made by Colin Hamilton of Thuja Wood Art)
Enamelled copper and stainless steel wires
Semi-precious stone cabochons and beads (from centre):
Nephrite (BC jade), Almandine Garnet, Shell, Rose Quartz, Bamboo Coral, Rhodochrosite, Clear Quartz Crystal, Calcite, Blue Tiger’s Eye, Shell, Hematite
Technique: handmade bobbin lace – free form
Dimensions in centimetres: 64 x 61 x 12 ( 4 cm without stands)
Dimensions in inches: 25 x 24 x 5 (2 inches without stands)
West Coast Mandala is an Offering to the magnificent Pacific Northwest nature.
In harsh climate of the temperate rainforest, human life has never been easy. Ancient people called upon spirit powers to receive guidance and protection. They were taught to live in harmony with the land and the ocean, and respect all plants and animals. This wise, timeless teaching still resonates on the West Coast.
The Offering: West Coast Mandala is presented in a frame made from red cedar driftwood, which carries the spirit of the tree of life, and creates a sacred space for reflection and meditation. In its centre, the mandala holds a cabochon of the B.C. jade, and radiates the energy outwards through the copper wire weave. Inner sacred geometry circle with semi-precious stones, coral and shell beads, represents the earth’s depths. Surrounding three currents symbolize underground, surface and ocean water bodies. Water brings fertility and abundance to the soil and to people, and they present offerings of flowers and fish. Fertile land is encircled by a protective range of the coastal mountains, which merge into the mist of the sky dome. From above, water motion, vegetation growth and people’s lives are governed by the moon cycle. All is connected and therefore in harmony with the timeless wisdom.
This artwork is now exhibited in Talisman Gallery on Pender Island, BC.
Copyright©2018. Lenka Suchanek. All rights reserved.
Posted on November 14, 2017
Reframed: Lost Art I
Material: Bronze wire Technique: Milanese tape lace
Size: 56 x 56 cm (22 x 22 in)
Reframed: Lost Art II
Material: Bronze wire Technique: Concentric continuous lace
Size: 56 x 56 cm (22 x 22 in)
In North America, handmade bobbin lace has been often called “a lost art”. I could not agree, because the lace I have known was very much alive – present, vibrant, breathing and growing. I followed her intricate patterns and looked for materials and forms that could carry the lace forward. In one of my many projects I explored pattern connections between various craft disciplines – wood work, stone carving, tile work and lace work – and set out a testing ground for new connections. Two pieces that remained from the project were put away, and literally, lost in my studio storage.
When I found them this summer I realized how much has changed in the last 15 years. The lace craft as I knew has been almost lost. The gossamer lace weave is getting weaker as the threads are ageing. Traditional schools closed, lace museums activities were reduced, and major international events abandoned because of lack of funds. At the same time, more and more independent artists started to use lace techniques in their work, creating imaginative lace art. As if lace had left the past and entered the future…
I decided to re-frame these two works to reflect the change. I covered painting canvas with silk fabric and cut the centre out to expose black background. As the lace stretches over the opening, it casts shadows, and the illusive pattern is dissipating into the black hole of the passing time. Lace remains, but only very few people can connect it to the history.
Can lace live detached from her own history? Can we?
Only time will tell…
These artworks are for sale in my WAYofLACE shop on Etsy.
Posted on September 9, 2017
We are happy to report that the lace|heart|art international challenge has been embraced by a worldwide lacemaking community. We have received many supportive comments via this blog and our facebook page, some questions, and YES … the FIRST ENTRIES!
Our sincere thanks go to the editors of the following magazines for featuring info about the lace|heart|art challenge:
Vuelta y Cruz (Twist and Cross) – Spain (published in Spanish and English)
Australian Lace Guild Magazine – Australia
Canadian Lacemaker Gazette – Canada
Lacemakers and lace groups who have promoted our event on social networks are too numerous to list – we send a big THANK YOU! to all of you and ask you to keep sharing ❤️ !
We are excited for making a special connection with many lacemakers around the world via Barb’s Heart. It is just what we wanted to share – her love and our gratitude.
To encourage more of you to participate and to make it easier for you, we updated our lace|heart|art support page with some helpful hints and tips on how to understand the pattern and make it your own. Please peruse and start working on your lace|heart|art!
PS: Do not forget to share the lace|heart|art with your lace friends!
Posted on June 6, 2017
New School of Lace is pleased to announce a launch of the ‘lace | heart | art’ – 1st international challenge and online exhibition of handmade bobbin lace in colour.
Our new project offers one simple heart pattern and invites lacemakers around the world to fill it with colours and love.
We welcome everybody, and especially young lacemakers, to participate, get inspired and transform our first heart pattern into original lace art.
In the inaugural edition, we offer one pattern that can be worked in fibre as well as wire medium. Our lace|heart|art pattern #1 is open to interpretation, and lacemakers are encouraged to fill the given pattern with colours of their choice. The heart design is open ended, and the trail can be finished in many imaginative ways.
The pattern, and the whole challenge, follows the New School of Lace principles of respecting the tradition and encouraging creativity in the field of handmade lace.
Learn more about the ‘lace|heart|art challenge’ and share the news with your lace friends!
Posted on May 8, 2015
Bobbin lace in wire workshop #4 is coming soon, and since it will happen on a Canadian public holiday weekend that is celebrated in honour of Queen Victoria’s birthday, the theme of the workshops is a Victorian Black Lace Brooch.
Join the class to learn how to make fine black lace, embellish it with jet crystals and finish it as a brooch. The workshop is design to suit beginners as well as lacemakers with some experience with wire. Instruction will cover braids, picots, leafs and basket weave cloth stitch with a special attention to handling fine enamelled copper wire, adding crystals and finishing.
The poster shows just a draft of the design as I am eagerly awaiting a shipment of brooch pin backs to finalize the design and make the first samples 🙂
Victorian Black Lace Brooch – Bobbin Lace in Wire #4
June workshop, on Saturday the 27, 2015 will celebrate arrival of summer with a bright happy “Sun” theme.
There are many ways how to create sun in lace. Numerous patterns had been developed by many previous lacemakers and lace designers, and we can find a lot of inspiration in traditional laces. It is hard to choose which one to start with, and I have not decided, yet it is going to be plaited bobbin lace design or needle lace Retticella in gold plated copper.
Posted on February 6, 2015
Treat yourself to a double lace event on Valentine’s Day!
Bobbin Lace in Wire Workshop #2 concurrent with a Lace Art Show will offer a special opportunity for students to see and learn from displayed lace art. Objets d’art – metal lace wall art, sculpture and wearable art – will offer an insight to possibilities of wire medium in handmade lace and motivate students to further their skills and free their imagination.
Lace Art Show is open to lacemakers, lace lovers, neighbours and friends from 11am to 4pm.
Bring your Valentine!
Posted on January 9, 2015
A new workshop for new lacemakers – designed with love and understanding, how difficult it can be to leave a comfort zone and start something new… such as lacemaking with wire. I remember clearly my excitement and fear many years ago, when I left the shore of the Old World and its beautiful, delicate fibre laces and ventured into unknown territory in life and lace. I also remember that the beginnings were sometimes hard and frustrating. I am happy to share things that learned along the way and I strive to present them gradually, in accessible and enjoyable form. Slowly, one stitch at a time – because lacemaking nowadays really is about the process. I look forward sharing the joy of creative lace with some of you in Ocean Park!