The fiber work made by Kat Sánchez Standfield is utterly fascinating. Standfield is a Panamanian-American artist who explores relationships and ideas of community through her colorful and often interactive art.
The three pieces above are titled Repairing, Restoring and Reclaiming and represent the stages of repair used in the technique of darning. In an introductory piece about this work Standfield says, “I consider these pieces as giant magnified versions of darning and visible mending. Techniques used to mend and repair fabric after it’s been ripped or worn down. We should consider our relationships to the things we own like the clothes that provide shelter and protection for our bodies.” She goes on to explain that the same concepts of maintenance and mending should apply to our personal relationships if we are to keep them healthy, just as we would mend our clothes to keep them wearable.
Standfield often explores new materials and techniques. One recent addition to her repertoire is tufted rugs. The rug above was commissioned by another artist based on his photograph of spilled wine.
Standfield has also collaborated on projects such as this mural for Talking Walls in Charlotte, NC.
This work is perhaps the most representative of the values that Standfield embodies. This is an art installation that was designed for the viewer to participate in. On the left, the piece has just been installed. You can see her labels for the excess fiber in the photo in the middle. The photo on the right depicts the completed weaving. Work like this is a community effort, requiring the artist to place their work in a space and let the audience complete it in whatever way they deem fit.
Discussion for Kids
Does the idea of making a piece of art and leaving it in public for others to alter make you nervous or does it seem exciting?
Where would you leave art for someone else to discover or add to? What kind of art would you leave?
Which of Standfield’s works above do you like the most? Why?