Textile Journeys – New Mexico

An exhibition of works by Cornelia Theimer Gardella and Emelie Rygfelt Wilander
Open Space Visitor Center Gallery - Albuquerque, New Mexico
August 19 – October 22, 2017

Artist Talks

Saturday, August 19, 1pm


Saturday, August 19, 2-4pm

Nature Walk and Eco-Dyeing

Sunday, August 20, 10am-noon

Cornelia Theimer Gardella (Germany/USA) and Emelie Rygfelt Wilander (Sweden) will be showing new work from their collaborative project “Textile Journeys” which the two artists started in 2015 after their art residencies at the Icelandic Textile Center. The exhibition consists of textile installations, woven wall pieces, and photographs which the artists created after spending a month working together in New Mexico in the fall of 2016.

At the core of “Textile Journeys” lies the exploration of land and home in the different locations where Cornelia Theimer Gardella and Emelie Rygfelt Wilander have worked together. Their journeys have taken them from Iceland in 2015 to Sweden and New Mexico in 2016.

In New Mexico, the artists studied traditional Southwestern textile techniques, participated in workshops and lectures during Churro Week at the Española Valley Fiber Arts Center (EVFAC) and explored native natural dyes. They met with New Mexicans to hear about their lives in the desert Southwest and their relationship to the land.

The common thread in the textile work in the exhibition is the use of New Mexico churro wool. While Emelie Rygfelt Wilander dyed the wool using local New Mexican plants as well as cochineal, Cornelia Theimer Gardella chose to work exclusively with the natural shades of the wool.

In addition to the textiles, Cornelia Theimer Gardella will be showing portraits from an ongoing photography series which she started in 2016 with the goal of documenting people's personal relationships to the land through interviews and portrait photography.