Saturday, December 14, 2013

Musings of a Textile Tragic - TFF Column
December 2013, Issue 112
Art Essay

Co-Editor of TFF: Marie-Therese Wisniowski

The largest selling textile magazine in Australasia is Textile Fibre Forum (TFF). I am the co-editor of the magazine (its founder - Janet de Boer - being the other co-editor). Hence I have created a column within the magazine titled – Musings of a Textile Tragic. This column will appear on this blogspot together with a link and contents page of each new issue of the quarterly magazine once it is available from magazine outlets and on the ArtWear website.

For your convenience, I have listed links to other Musing articles:
Musings of a Textile Tragic
Of Fires and Flooding Rains
Lost in Translation
Venusian Men
The ArtWork of Youth
Textile Tasters from My Workshop
Be Brave, The Rest Will Follow

Front Cover of December 2013, Issue 112, of Textile Fibre Forum Magazine.

Features in December 2013, Issue 112, of TFF Magazine
The following are features that are contained in the December 2013 issue of TFF Magazine.

MCA, string theory: Focus on contemporary Australian art;
‘SOCIAL SECURITY’: Textile and Clothes for the New Era, Life after WW II by Peter McNeil;
“There’s no other store like DAVID JONES” by Vishna Collins;
LESLEY TURNER - Textile Artist - PHASES by Lesley Turner;
ROSIE WARE - Sharing Torres Strait Islander Culture through Textiles by Catherine Titasey;
ENVIRONMENTAL ART - Reflecting Creative Processes by Michael Shiell;
IF THIS THEN THAT: An Approach to Art and Teaching by Jeannette DeNicolis Meyer;
ISABEL FOSTER IN RETROSPECT - The Challenge of Colour by Joy Serwylo;
MYSTERIUM 2013 by WAFTA Member Diane Binns;
TRACE/RETRACE an exhibition by Gabriella Hegyes;
PLUSH! & PAT JONES: Creation to Collection 2013 by Stephen Naylor;
LOOKING FOR AN ESCAPE by Alison Withers;
and more…

Plus: Regular Columns, Book Reviews and for SUBSCRIBERS ONLY, the multi-page newsletter, giving you the low down on what is happening, when it is happening and where it is happening!

Musings of a Textile Tragic (Regular Column in TFF)
I cannot remember the exact date or time when Michelle Moriaty approached me to become co-editor of Textile Fibre Forum (TFF). I can remember that the conversation was like it occurred in an echo chamber – Michelle talked, I listened but my mind was racing elsewhere – is Janet not well? I could vaguely recall Michelle’s words. Of course she was well, but she has taken this in stages; first to ensure that TFF would have a long secured future she moved ownership from her organisation to ArtWear without compromising its general direction – to sit on the junction of art, craft, wearables, fashion and all concepts concerning textile and fabrics. Her relinquishing of sole editorship was the second stage to reduce her editorial commitment but still to continue to serve her community. Originally it was agreed that on handing over the ownership, Janet would only oversee the editorship for an additional twelve months but after persuasion and begging she has extended it for two years, which has now become an on-going commitment to being co-editor of the magazine in the near future.

I put down the phone and did not give Michelle a definite answer whether I would accept the position or not. I had to think about it. I have my own company (Art Quill & Co Pty. Ltd.) and so I had to ensure there would not be a conflict between my company, ArtWear Publications Pty. Ltd. and Janet’s organisation, TAFTA. I had also recently rebuilt my own studio (Art Quill Studio) and so I had a commitment to make ArtCloth for exhibitions, go interstate and overseas in order to give workshops, write articles for magazines and maintain my blogspot ( - but most of all, I needed to be confident that I could assist Janet and Michelle in extending Janet’s community and making a real contribution to promoting and sharing with her community all things textiles, fabrics and fibres!

Michelle and I talked and resolved all possible areas of conflict - I could continue to write for international magazines, as well as maintain my blogspot, but whilst co-editor, I would not publish in any other Australasian textile magazines that were not under the ownership of ArtWear Publications. As a continuing practising artist, I would not decide nor take part in any conversation concerning whether or not my exhibitions would be published in TFF. Note: I have previously had a number of articles in TFF of that type. If there was a conflict between our companies (Art Quill & Co and ArtWear) a third party would resolve it. Furthermore, my husband would take up shares in ArtWear if agreed by the shareholders, and so keeping me at arms length from company directives. Finally, I would only initially commit to four issues, after which ArtWear and I would review any on-going commitment since I would need to measure what impact such a commitment would have on me as a practising artist and of course ArtWear would need to assess my effectiveness as a co-editor. Putting these measures in place made it possible for me to accept the co-editorship. I deliberated and accepted the position two weeks later.

The Art Quill & Co Pty Ltd company car sitting in front of the Art Quill Studio glass entrance doors.
Photo Courtesy: Skelcon Pty Ltd.
Photo Credit: Murray McKean Photography.

Practising artist Marie-Therese demonstrating her signature "MultiSperse Dye Sublimation" (MSDS) technique employing disperse dyes and native flora on synthetic fibres at Zijdelings, Centre for Textile and Surface Design in Tilburg, The Netherlands in 2012.

There are many people out there in the TFF community that have had much longer and deeper association with Janet than myself. Nevertheless, let me just give you an inkling of her workload – it is frightening! From the Fibre Forums to her gallery to her website to her newsletter to TFF, each of those activities have a number of helpers but there is no one who steers and breathes life into any of these ventures more than Janet. She was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia – highlighting her work for her community, and trust me, Janet has a community. Her community is ethnically diverse, primarily women with a sprinkling of men that range in age from high school students to octogenarians and older. They possess vast array of professions, qualifications, businesses and art/craft interests. They write articles for her, do administration chores, sell raffle tickets (a form of gambling Janet) and of course, sell liquor for her (hmm, Forums, Janet and wine!) I could go on but I won’t since Janet will remain as co-editor of the magazine for some time.

Marie-Therese’s MSDS ArtCloth, "Nura Nura" was exhibited at her solo exhibition, "When Rainforests Ruled" at Purple Noon Art Gallery, Sydney from the 7th July to 31st August 2012 in conjunction with Helen Lancaster’s concurrent solo exhibition, "Floating".
Irene Manion authored a review of the exhibition titled,"Dual Journeys - Helen Lancaster and Marie-Therese Wisniowski", which was published in the August 2012 issue of Textile Fibre Forum magazine.

The magazine is all about the textile and fabric community and so I hope that I will help Janet and Artwear to grow the community even further. To make Janet’s community larger we need to bring in those that at moment are not aware of us or those that cannot relate to what we do. Students are one key and Janet has worked hard there. Every young person who subscribes or reads this magazine will be with us for a long time. The youth love “edgy” stuff and so from time-to-time the “edgy” stuff will continue in this magazine.

It is an OZ magazine but with an international ear. Janet has worked hard in bringing to us Asian as well as NZ techniques and textiles. We need to be the magazine of first choice in the Australasian textile and fabric community, where the Europeans and the North Americans will come to us in order to learn about the textiles and fabrics that were created in our backyard.

Our community is ethnically diverse. The richness in Australia is because we possess such a diverse community. It reflects in the style of textiles and fabrics that we have created and the items we made. We are democratic and eclectic and so it is easy to showcase those who are unknown and sit them next to articles about those who are well known. It is the quality, richness and “wow-ness” of a fabric or a fabric item that really matters. Our motto is simple: “Be brave – the rest will follow” (Nehru).

Being schooled by Janet’s TFF was one of my true pleasures. I would sit on my balcony, alone at the table, magazine and red-wine glass in hand, and read it during “me-time”. I only hope my stint as co-editor reflects just a smidgen of hers.

One of life’s pleasures. Marie-Therese sitting on her balcony, alone at the table, magazine and wine glass in hand, reading yet another informative issue of Textile Fibre Forum!


Flora Fascinata said...

Wonderful! Congratulations! I love your academic writing, I'll check your column. Xx

Jason Sky said...

Congratulations Marie!

cherryadelina said...

Congrats Marie!
Its a wonderful Idea.
I am sure it will work in improving the wisdom of many fashion designers.

Art Quill Studio said...

Many thanks for your kind comments and support . . . it is appreciated ! ! I hope you enjoy Textile Fibre Forum magazine (TFF) and future Musings of a Textile Tragic 'regular column' blogs as they appear with each corresponding issue of TFF.