Microcosms: The Stitched Textiles of Tom Lundberg
Monday, July 12, 2010 to Friday, September 3, 2010
Visitors can leave any preconceptions they might have about embroidery at the door of the Robert Hillestad Textiles Gallery when they arrive to view the magical stitched worlds created by Tom Lundberg. From July 12 through Sept. 3, 2010, Robert Hillestad Gallery at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln is hosting the exhibition "Microcosms: The Stitched Textiles of Tom Lundberg."
The artist will visit UNL to present a free public talk in the Human Sciences Building, room 11, at 5 p.m., Aug. 26 preceding a gallery reception in his honor. The gallery is in the second floor of the Human Sciences Building , north of 35th street and East Campus Loop (map at www1.unl.edu/tour/HSB).
Lundberg wryly subverts notions of this genteel pastime of embroidery by composing and painstakingly needling unpredictable, surreal, perverse or mystical dream states that serve as cautionary statements about our relationships with both the natural and the built universes we inhabit. That he manages on such a small scale to embrace many of the paradoxes and mysteries of life is nothing short of breathtaking.
Born in Belle Plaine, Iowa, Lundberg now lives in Fort Collins, Colo., where he is professor of art at Colorado State University. He earned his BFA degree in painting from the University of Iowa and his MFA in textiles from Indiana University. For more than three decades Lundberg has been exploring the world at the tip of a needle, confidently and persistently articulating private views into and through common objects, backyard corners, windows and rooms, and verdant landscapes. Disembodied legs and feet appear in the least likely places; stars shine and shoot, waters stream, matches, tools and barbed wire pose menacingly. Here we find the poignant and pragmatic sensibility of a poem by Emily Dickinson, there the cool and obtuse detachment of an Edward Hopper painting, and now here the ominous foreboding of a David Lynch film, and sometimes variants of these conditions are rolled together into single complex yet intimate scenarios, each defined by thousands of minute stitches.
Viewers easily leave the real world behind as they're pulled into Lundberg's private and other-worldly microcosms.
Writing about this work, Sunita Patterson, former editor of Fiberarts magazine, said "...Lundberg's works speak to intuition as much as to reason. The representations are clear -- the moon, a flip-flop (the Japanese zori), pruned branches -- but their context is elusive. There is a hint of memory. A remnant of thought. A story almost told. Each work reflects an intriguing balance between the spoken and the unspoken. Seen on the wall or on the page, each work has a quiet depth, inviting continued reflection."
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The exhibition, curated at the Hillestad Gallery by Michael James, chair and Ardis James Professor in the Department of Textiles, Clothing and Design, is supported in part by funding provided by the Friends of the Robert Hillestad Textiles Gallery and by UNL's Departments of Textiles, Clothing and Design. Tom Lundberg is represented by Hibberd McGrath Gallery of Breckenridge, Colorado http://www.hibberdmcgrath.com/
The Hillestad Gallery is part of the Department of Textiles, Clothing and Design in the UNL College of Education and Human Sciences. The gallery is on the second floor of the Human Sciences Building on East Campus, on 35th Street north of East Campus Loop [map]. Hours are 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Friday and by appointment. Admission is free. For more information, call (402) 472-6370 or visit http://textilegallery.unl.edu.
Dormant Season, 2009. Hand and machine embroidery; cotton, silk, metallic and rayon threads on cotton.
Summer Night, 2009. Hand and machine embroidery; cotton, silk, metallic and rayon threads on rayon velvet and painted cotton.
Summer Night (detail view).