An art exhibition titled “The Threads That Bind” will be held at the Ashland University Coburn Gallery from Aug. 22 through Sept. 15. The opening reception for the exhibition will be held Thursday, Aug. 22, from 4:30 to 6 p.m., with an artist talk taking place during the reception.
A lecture on Contemporary Fiber Arts by Priscilla Roggenkamp, associate professor of art, will take place on Tuesday, Sept. 10, at 7 p.m. at the Schar College of Education’s Ronk Lecture Hall on the Ashland University campus.
The “Threads that Bind” exhibition is a related group of sculptures and wall pieces, many created by traditional and experimental fiber art processes. The “threads that bind” this exhibit range from the direct threads or tools that make up pieces of cloth; to the conceptual threads that connect each of us as we collect, gather and interpret our experiences; to the actual --- the binding of ideas and materials through the collaborative art making process.
The exhibition is curated by Roggenkamp and is the culmination of her sabbatical work that includes studio exploration, research in contemporary fiber arts and travel to Poland for the International Triennial of Textiles.
This exhibition will include artworks by:
-- Roggenkamp in collaboration with Keith McMahon of Homeworth; vessels of fibers and metal
-- Betsy Timmer of Lawrence, Kansas; sculptural forms of fabric and other materials
-- Ken Arthur of Mansfield; assemblage constructions
-- Kate McMahon of Homeworth; woven wall pieces
-- Carole Swope of Alliance in collaboration with Roggenkamp; a wall piece created with recycled zippers
-- Anne Taub, Ann Hendel, Martha McClaugherty, Kathy Kramer, Kate McMahon, Libby Patterson, Vicki Dutter, Madison Wayt, Dawn Wayt and Pat Antonosanti in collaboration with Roggenkamp; a knitted, felted wall piece.
Roggenkamp works in a variety of media and her sculptural interests are loosely figural, most often having the human form or its clothing stand in as gateway for meaning.
As associate professor of art at Ashland University, she works primarily with art education students. Educated at Heidelberg College, Wright State University, University of Arkansas and Kent State University, Roggenkamp finds the combination of teaching art and creating art a comfortable and energizing balance.
Roggenkamp met Betsy Timmer when they exhibited their work at the Mary Brogan Museum in Tallahassee, Fla. She felt an immediate kinship with Timmer and her work, and she is thrilled to have Timmer’s work included in this exhibit.
Timmer's work has been exhibited across the country in venues such as the Lawrence Arts Center in Lawrence, Kansas; the Arts Incubator Cocoon Gallery in Kansas City, Mo.; the Olin Gallery at Washington & Jefferson College in Washington, Pa.;, the Mary Brogan Museum of Art & Science in Tallahassee, Fla.; and the Grand Rapids Museum of Art in Grand Rapids, Mich. Besides a dedicated studio artist, Timmer is an instructor in the Art Department at the University of Kansas, a freelance graphic designer, a wife and a mother.
Roggenkamp shares an art studio with Keith McMahon in Alliance. The shared space and the similarities and differences in their work sparked an interest in collaborating. Their first collaboration in 2005 took them to Akko, Israel, to create a carved stone and fabric piece.
McMahon’s background in biology and sculpture, and his interest in history, nature and traditional farming culture find voice in his works. He teaches as an adjunct professor at Ashland University. He lives on a farm in Homeworth, Ohio with his wife, Kate whose weavings are part of this exhibition.
Kate McMahon is a textile artist who studied weaving and belongs to several spinning and weaving guilds. She teaches workshops on a variety of fiber-related topics and techniques. She is a professor of literature and linguistics at the University of Mount Union, with a specialty in Medieval Studies. It was with her encouragement and assistance that Roggenkamp ventured into the complexities of loom weaving.
Arthur is a self-taught artist whose primary medium is assemblage utilizing found objects. His sculptures have been exhibited throughout Ohio and beyond. He has acted as guest curator in several shows, collaborated with others on various projects and participated in public art demonstrations. Arthur is a native of Richland County, Ohio, and many objects used in his sculptures are of local historical interest.
Roggenkamp and Keith McMahon met Arthur while hanging a collaborative show at the Mansfield Art Center and a friendship developed from there. This friendship and a mutual respect for each other’s work led to a collaborative piece called ‘Mind, Body and Spirit’ by the three. This stone and metal sculpture was created for Galion Community Hospital in Galion, Ohio.
Swope has been involved in fiber arts through a lifelong interest in sewing. She is a musician and music teacher with a master’s degree in music education and curriculum. She has published several books on music, interdisciplinary teaching in the arts, and differentiation in teaching music.
The Aug. 22 opening reception is free and open to the public, as is the exhibition. For more about the Threads That Bind exhibition at Coburn Gallery and the opening reception, visit www.ashland.edu/coburngallery or find us on Facebook. The exhibition runs through Sept. 15.
The Coburn Gallery is open from 12 to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and 12 to 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.