Saturday, March 10, 2018

"Renaissance Man"
My New Hand Dyed & Printed Fabric Design
ArtCloth Lengths

Marie-Therese Wisniowski



Preamble
On this blog spot there are posts that center on my “Wearable Art” (e.g. scarves, digital or analogue created fabric lengths etc.) For your convenience I have listed these posts below.

A Selection of My Scarves
Leaves Transformed: A New Collection of My Digitally Designed Fabrics
My New Silk Rayon Velvet Scarves@Purple Noon Art And Sculpture Gallery
My Fabric Lengths@QSDS
My Fabric Collection:"Oh, Oh Marilyn and Mona!"@Spoonflower
2013 Australian Craft Awards – Finalist
My Scarves@2014 Scarf Festival: "Urban Artscape" Pashminas
My New Scarves and Fabric Lengths
New Range of Silk Neckties - Karma and Akash
AIVA: My New Hand Dyed and Hand Printed Fabric Design
New Colorways For My 'Cultural Graffiti' Fabrics
Byzantine Glow: A New Collection of My Digitally Designed Fabrics
Wall Flower: A New Collection of My Digitally Designed Fabrics
Ink Fern - A New Collection of My Digitally Designed Fabrics
Celebratory Fireworks
My New Silk ArtCloth Scarves
New ‘Unique State’ Silk ArtCloth Scarves
UBIRR
 - My New Hand Dyed & Printed Fabric Design
Banksia - My New Hand Dyed and Hand Printed Fabric Design

Ginkgo Love - My New Hand Dyed and Hand Printed Fabric Design

“Garden Delights I & II”
 - My New Hand Dyed and Hand Printed Fabric Design
Wallflower III - My New Hand Dyed and Hand Printed Fabric Design
Rainforest Beauty
 Collection - My New Hand Dyed and Hand Printed Fabric Design
Spring & Autumn Flurry Collection
 - My New Hand Dyed and Hand Printed Fabric Design

La Volute Collection - My New Hand Dyed and Hand Printed Fabric Design
Urban Butterfly -
 My New Hand Printed Fabric Design
Acanthus Dream
 - My New Hand Printed Fabric Design

Cascading Acanthus - 
My New Hand Dyed and Hand Printed Fabric Design


Introduction[1]
The “Vitruvian Man” was created by Leonardo da Vinci around the year 1487. The drawing, which is in pen and ink on paper, depicts a male figure in two superimposed positions with his arms and legs apart and simultaneously inscribed in a circle and square. The drawing and text are sometimes called the "Canon of Proportions" or less often, "Proportions of Man".

The proportional relationship of the parts reflects a universal design. A "medical" equilibrium of elements ensures a stable structure. In the late 1480s, this theme of the artistic microcosm emerged as one of the unifying principles of da Vinci's thought. This architectural application is not the end of the matter, rather it represents the beginning of a concept, which had a literally universal application.

This image provides the perfect example of Leonardo's keen interest in proportion. In addition, this image represents a cornerstone of Leonardo's attempts to relate man to nature. Encyclopaedia Britannica online states: "Leonardo envisaged the great picture chart of the human body he had produced through his anatomical drawings and Vitruvian Man as a cosmografia del minor mondo (cosmography of the microcosm). He believed the


Concept and Techniques/Processes Used to Create the Fabrics
My new, contemporary fabric design, “Renaissance Man” is my tribute to Leonardo Da Vinci’s legacy to the enrichment of Western culture. Leonardo (1452-1519) was a painter, architect, inventor, and student of all things scientific. His natural genius crossed so many disciplines that he embodied the term - the “Renaissance Man.”

Leonardo’s drawings would become an essential part of his legacy. He sketched prolifically, planning futuristic inventions, exploring human anatomy, and blocks for paintings such as “The Virgin of the Rocks” and his mural “The Last Supper”.

An interesting feature of Leonardo’s is his cursive mirror writing style - a special kind of shorthand that he invented. Perhaps the most widely seen piece of Leonardo's mirror writing is his notes on “Vitruvian Man” - his famous drawing that fits the proportions of the human body into the geometry of both a circle and a square.

Not only did Leonardo write with a special kind of shorthand that he invented himself, he also mirrored his writing, starting at the right side of the page and moving to the left. Only when he was writing something intended for other people did he write in the normal direction - left to right[2].

The purpose of his mirror writing is unknown, but one idea is that it may have kept his hands clean. People who were contemporaries of Leonardo left records that they saw him write and paint left handed. He also made sketches showing his own left hand at work. As a left-handed person, this mirrored writing style would have prevented him from smudging his ink as he wrote[2].

Knowing that not all languages are written from left to right – traditional Arabic languages are written from right to left and traditional Japanese is written from top to bottom - I also researched other writing styles that emulated Leonardo’s writing methodology and came across the ancient Indus Script, which was written from right to left. The ancient undeciphered (to this day) Indus Script combined both word signs/images and symbols much like Leonardo. An image from a collection of terracotta seals displaying the Indus Valley script was reworked into a contemporary silk screen visual.

The beautiful, individual, cursive, mirrored script is a hallmark that resides in many of Leonardo’s works and so I have concentrated on this aspect as one of the main design features in my new, unique and contemporary fabric design - “Renaissance Man”.

The design comes in two colorways - one in magenta/purple hues, the other in blue/purple hues. These colors were thoughtfully chosen to encapsulate the richly colored contemporary hues that are available in today’s world of dyes and paints.

White cotton fabrics were dyed and over dyed using time-honored hand dyeing techniques to add visual depth, pattern and contrast to the fabric background/s. The fabrics were then screen-printed with constructed images of the "Vitruvian Man” over the entire fabric lengths. Using analogous colors (in each specific colorway), additional layers of complex images were overprinted in transparent, opaque and metallic pigments until a richly hued and textured surface was created.

Still employing time-honored hand printing processes, additional writings of Leonardo’s were reworked and then screen-printed in metallic gold pigment over the complex layers to build on the visually rich and dense surface layers – adding contrast, depth and a sumptuous aesthetic to the design.

Finally, the last layer, the Indus Valley Seal script image, was overprinted in rich metallic gold pigment to create additional movement and a highly evocative visual contrast to the already sumptuous and multi-layered design - a tribute to Leonardo’s rich and enduring legacy!

The fabric and patterning in “Renaissance Man” can be designed using colors of your choice to create a truly unique and individual statement. “Renaissance Man” fabric lengths can be used for wearable art, accessories, patch work, quilts, furnishings, as framed artworks and interior design projects. Please email me at - Marie-Therese - to discuss further options.


“Renaissance Man”
My New Hand Dyed and Hand Printed Fabric Design


View of “Renaissance Man” design as fat quarters (close up). The design comes in two colorways - one in magenta/purple hues (left), the other in blue/purple hues (right).

“Renaissance Man” in magenta/purple hues (full view).
Technique: Dyed, overdyed, screen printed employing transparent, opaque and metallic pigments on cotton.
Size: 113 cm wide x 100 cm high printed on cotton.

“Renaissance Man” in magenta/purple hues (detail view).

“Renaissance Man” in magenta/purple hues (detail view).

“Renaissance Man” in blue/purple hues (full view). Technique: Dyed, overdyed, screen printed employing transparent, opaque and metallic pigments on cotton.
Size: 113 cm wide x 100 cm high printed on cotton.

“Renaissance Man” in blue/purple hues (detail view).

“Renaissance Man” in blue/purple hues (detail view).


References:
[1] Leonardo da Vinci. Net - https://www.leonardodavinci.net/the-vitruvian-man.jsp

[2] Museum of Science, Boston. https://www.mos.org/leonardo/activities/mirror-writing

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