Two San Francisco area artists explore geometric possibilities, working in textiles rather than pixels. They met when each exhibited an art piece incorporating the same traditional quilt block at a Bay Area show. While Cele Stauduhar uses lines and curves to contain and control space, Eleanor Dugan’s curves struggle to escape their core confinement.
STAUDUHAR: “A straight line can appear bent and a curved line can be the shortest distance. A closed path delineates an inside and an outside, but which is which? Can you not capture the lions by locking yourself in a cage?”
DUGAN: “My current works have no social, political, or narrative messages.They seek simply to delight and intrigue, providing a few moments of pure pleasure. If they can make people—however harried, weary, or distressed— break out in a big smile of surprise, I’ve succeeded. (There is entirely too much angst in the world!)”
Artist Bios: ELEANOR KNOWLES DUGAN was a theatrical costumer in New York City for sixteen years before relocating to California to design for films. She began quilting in 1971, drawing on techniques learned in costuming and her previous work as a hand weaver. The Polka Dot Series began in 2001 as a challenge to see how far she could push a single block design, “Borrow from Peter to Pay Paul,” and a single graphic, dots. To date, there are 32 pieces and counting.
CELE STAUDUHAR came to art quilting via a meandering pathway that was an outgrowth of her past careers as seamstress and engineer. She began at The North Face in Berkeley, and then moved on to start her own business designing and fabricating custom mountaineering equipment for prominent expeditions. Later, she felt a need to indulge her mathematical side and completed a degree in computer science from UC Berkeley and worked for several years in that industry. Art quilting emerged as a way of satisfying the needs of her creative side while incorporating her skills and past experience. “My computer education informs my work, gives me a strong appreciation for the esthetics of elegance, simplicity and clarity. I employ those principles in my compositions as my personal style and artistic statements evolve.”