In the high desert mountains where I live, the delineation between earth and sky is a clear, distinct line unobscured by trees or atmosphere. At sunset, the mountains turn black while the sky glows in varying depths of blue. Whether it is sand that gives way to ocean, earth to sky, or life to death, this idea of the edge, literal and metaphorical, has always fascinated me.
My large, contemporary art quilts explore this split through color, shape, and line. Deeply influenced by my surroundings, my work is an abstract interpretation of place and time.
The dyeing process – the chaotic exchange of chlorine and hydrogen atoms – is by its nature a spontaneous and sometimes unpredictable event. This somewhat random deposit of dye marks the fabric and creates visual texture and depth.
Using a rolling blade I hand cut the fabric. This free form technique complements the irregularity of the dyeing process and is a natural extension of my movements. I work intuitively with a minimal palette, which results in bold and graphic quilts.
In my current body of work, I am experimenting with the opposite. Working with straight uniform lines and a repetitive design – the grid – I am creating works based on the template of the traditional color triad. I want to pare down my use of line, form, and color and play with negative space. The seaming of the fabric creates its own pattern and shadow line. Together the individual panels create a whole – one that encapsulates color within a spare environment.
Driving Instructions: My studio is located in Indian Creek. From Buttercup Road, turn east on Indian Creek Road. Drive 1 mile and turn right on Bannock Drive to the end. My studio is the metal building on the right.
Janet Starr Hand Dyed
209 Bannock Drive (Indian Creek), Hailey