getting it out

I recently celebrated a personal milestone: six months in NYC and I’m still alive, well, and not starving (yet)! The day on my calendar signified a lot of things – the end of one type of trepidation and the beginning of another, accomplishing a comprehensive cooling of my steamy fourth-floor apartment in a 90+ degree summer, transitioning from a total city newbie to only slightly new, and perhaps most importantly, the completion of a studio project marking the end of the first cycle of my artist residency.

Early in June, with a gallery-opening date of July 8 in the front of my mind, I finally decided on the project that I wanted to present in the group show celebrating the six artists in the Textile Arts Center’s first Artist-In-Residence program. I had been ruminating on some materials that had been inadvertently created during the design and construction of these chairs, and I felt like it was time to get those ideas out of my head and onto some fabric! So I embarked upon a large-scale block printing project, Path. And now that I’ve gotten it out, I’m ready to move on to a fresh new project!

Loose block printed fabrics, ready to be chosen for the Path installation.

Choosing a palette and mixing inks for printing.

Preparing the ink with a brayer - ready to roll ink onto the wood block.

Covering the wood block with a smooth layer of ink.

Positioning the inked block on the fabric.

Block printing requires firm, uniform pressure to achieve a good print, so stepped and stomped on the blocks!

All of the selected prints after stretching them around wooden stretcher bars.

One of my favorites - a quiet print.

The rough details of the wood block come through in the prints.

I decided to install the "tools" in the show, too! Here are the wood blocks that were used to make the prints, spruced up with some coordinating ink colors.

A detail of one of the blocks and its myriad pathways.

We had a great turnout for the opening of the show - lots of lovely people in the gallery.

All six of us artists at the end of the show opening. These are some really amazing women!

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About whitney crutchfield

I'm a textile designer, artist, and intern extraordinaire giving it a shot in the big city. I like to look at things and watch people. You might find me toiling away on a new design in my Brooklyn studio, embarrassingly chuckling at NPR guests as I fiddle with things in the craft room of a certain lifestyle company, salivating while staring at the pie shop that sits below my bedroom window, or dodging doggy poo on a run in Prospect Park.
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4 Responses to getting it out

  1. Dang Amanda says:

    Great designs. It’s nice seeing a bit of your process. I totally love that you included the blocks in the show! Those are art in themselves. LOVELY STUFFS.

  2. marcy says:

    love this concept and you executed it beautifully! did you carve the wood blocks with hand tools or use a drill or dremel? i am a big fan of the dremel w/ a small sanding attachment ;)

    • whitney crutchfield says:

      Hi Marcy! Thanks for your kind words. I used a power router with a bit capable of working around templates. But I just bought a dremel and can’t wait to start a new project with it!

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