The art of Linda Colsh explores humanist themes in three areas of interest: ageing, the environment, and migration. With an affinity for the unnoticed, the displaced and the invisible, she chooses her subject matter from urban streets or rural woods, farms and creeks. Growing up on a small island in the Chesapeake Bay gave her a keen appreciation of nature. Her interest in people and cultures derives from a quarter century of experience as an American expat traveling the cities of Europe and Asia. In 2014, the family returned to Maryland, settling on a quiet hilltop in the Middletown Valley.
Each work begins with plain cloth or paper that she alters with paint, stain, dye, discharge and ink. Her instinct is to work in a minimal neutral palette within a wide value range. Her process is weighted to designing content from her photographs and drawings, before layering and stitching together as fiber art for the wall or pedestal- or ceiling-mounted pieces.
A lifelong artist with degrees in the history of art, Linda Colsh exhibits internationally. Highlights include selection for Latvia’s International Textile & Fibre Art Triennial, the Fuller Craft Biennial and several Fiber Art Now Excellence in Fibers exhibitions. Her career includes solo exhibitions in Germany, Belgium, Hungary, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, France, Korea; and the United States. She has juried, judged and curated major international exhibitions, including Quilt Nihon, Visions, Quilt National and the National Quilt Museum’s 20th Anniversary. Her work is published worldwide and is held in public, private and corporate collections, including the Collection of John M. Walsh III, Lore Degenstein Gallery Permanent Collection, International Quilt Museum and Germany’s Nordwolle Textile Museum. Among her awards are the European Quilt Triennial first prize, Maryland Federation of Art’s Art on Paper Juror’s Choice Award and Nihon Vogue’s Quilts Japan Prize.
Dominie, a founding member of New Image Artists, is inspired by the natural world. Her work has subtly and a feeling of spontaneity. Her textile art feels to me like a poem written in response to an observed moment in nature. What interest me about the work “Ghost Writing” is the mark marking and drawn quality of the work.
Dominie Nash is a self-taught textile artist working in a studio in Washington DC.. Her work is included in the collections of the International Quilt Museum, Renwick Gallery,International Monetary Fund, Braintree District Museum (England),Kaiser Permanente,San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles,and DC Art Bank. A recipient of 2001 and 2012 Individual Artist Awards from the Maryland State Arts Council and a 2010 Creative Projects grant from the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County (MD), and has received awards in juried exhibits. She has exhibited widely in group exhibits, nationally and in Europe and Japan and has had numerous solo exhibits in the DC area and around the country. Her work has been published in Art Quilts Unfolding,Artistry in Fiber:Wall Art, Art Quilt Portfolio:The Natural World, Quilting Art by Spike Gillespie, 500 Art Quilts, Surface Design, American Craft,Embroidery, Quilt Art by Kate Lenkowsky, The Art Quilt by Robert Shaw , and Fiberarts Design Books 2-7.
Please follow Dominie on Instagram at @dominiemaria
This day – October 31st – Halloween has brought me back to my early childhood through memory.
It was magic for me! As a hypersensitive, already bookish, artistic child, my dreams came alive on this night.
I am the 4th of nine children (2nd girl after my eldest sister and two brothers) For Halloween, this fact created a built in “Charlie Brown” like gang wandering through the streets of our neighborhood in Northwest Washington as we treat or treated with home made costumes and pillow case bags for as long as we could. Returning home, we ate the spoils from our candy haul until we collapsed into our night dreams.
What do I mean by magic? Do I mean creativity?
Do I mean developing the ability to create your own story – even as a child?
Perhaps,I mean allowing imagination to exist, to grow, to be nurtured.
Or, it may mean to create something undefinable that carries meaning. – A sense of a something that is being created from nothing. Magic?
This Halloween, I share my friend, Theresa Martin’s work as an example of an artist who continues to nurture her imagination to create meaning in a magical way.
Thank you for reading. Happy Halloween.
Mixed Media Collage by Theresa Martin
( Tap on the image to magnify, Tap out to go back to the full image.)
The “Time Piece” series by Joan Dreyer is an ongoing project by the mixed media artist where she hand stitches tree bark collected over time. Each piece uses rings of stitches to create a circular pattern not unlike the rings of a tree. The hand stitched process creates a range of thick and thin rings that blend with the bark and create a kind of skin. Each piece is unique, while sharing similar qualities such as the small scale ( 5” x 5” x 2.5”), a palette of ochres, browns and grey and the silk hand-stitched backing on each of the pieces.
To paint a broad stroke, Joan’s art addresses life’s stages and the challenges that individuals face during the journey of their lives. Her work is subtle yet leaves a profound impact on viewers. The “Time Piece” body of work falls under what Joan has described as her “Mourning Series”.
I’ve felt that mourning was mostly about the loss of a person. My view expanded when I came across an essay by Nicole Davi called “Tree Clocks and Climate Change’ in “The Language of Trees”, a collection of essays, poems and drawings by Irish artist, Katie Holten.
Nicole Davi is a scientist who studies tree rings and travels to the far regions of the planet to measure tree ring samples from very old trees. Tree ring widths vary from year to year. ( In good years, the rings are wider than in tough years.) She describes tree ring records as “natural recorders” of climate – going back thousands of years. The records are one of the keys to understanding climate change in the past and what is possible in the future.
Climate change in our era has been “front of mind” for me this summer. While we’ve had impacts of extreme weather for some time – this year – it has become more and more frequent. In a way, I’m mourning a lost world and trying to figure out how to move forward in a time of uncertainty.
I’ve started thinking about the role of the artist in the era of climate change. How does it look? How does it feel? What do we mean when we talk about sustainability?
Joan’s Time Piece series reminds me of the cycles of life but also of our connection to each other, our past, our losses, our gifts but also our future.
We hope that you will join us this coming Saturday for an insightful conversation into the creative processes of Alonzo Davis and Chee Keong Kung at the Workhouse Center for the Arts in the Vulcan Gallery. There is plenty of parking at Lorton – North and South Parking Lots.
If this is your first time coming out to Workhouse, please check the campus map as well as the visitors information on the website.
Look for the Love Size on the campus central quad.
Alonzo J. Davis’ career as an artist spans four decades. A native of Tuskegee, Alabama, Davis moved with his family to Los Angeles in his early teens. After acquiring an undergraduate degree at Pepperdine College he earned an MFA in Printmaking and Design at Otis Art Institute. Influenced early on by the assemblagists, Davis soon took wing and began to experiment with a variety of mediums, techniques and themes. At the suggestion of artist and former professor, Charles White, Davis began to produce prints and paintings in series.
While he was inspired by travel to Africa, the Caribbean and American Southwest—the colors and patterns of the Pacific Rim cultures also seeped into Davis’ artwork. During the ‘70’s and early ‘80’s, Davis’ involvement in the California mural movement culminated with the 1984 Olympic Murals project. His Eye on ’84 is one of ten murals on the walls of the downtown Los Angeles Harbor Freeway.
Chee Keong Kung
Geometry and gestural mark-making are integral to Kung’s practice that is rooted in his training in art and architecture. Kung grew up in Singapore, where the rich diversity of cultures has indelibly shaped his approach to artmaking. He works with an evolving vocabulary informed by the cultural milieu and observations from natural and man-made environments. Kung is interested in the emotive resonance that grows out of the act of intent seeing and remembering. His process relies on discovery and invention while navigating the spaces between light and shadow, depth and flatness, and motion and stillness.
Kung’s works are in private, corporate, and institutional collections, including The National Museum Art Gallery of Singapore and The DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities.Born in Singapore, Kung studied art & architecture at the University of Houston and real estate at Cornell University.He lives and works in McLean, VA.
I am currently painting scenes of groups of people in Meridian Hill/Malcom X park. While researching the history of the park, I came across the phrase “a pleasure park” used to describe it’s intended use. The pursuit of pleasure is a survival instinct that heals and nourishes the soul. The pandemic from 2020 through 2023 disrupted so many lives, including my own. My paintings of Meridian Hill/Malcom X park depict Washingtonians pursuing natural and familiar pleasures including sharing meals, exercising, enjoying fresh air, rest and human connection. The paintings celebrate the joy of once again gathering in public spaces after too much time spent in isolation during the pandemic. “Don’t Tell”, “It’s a Family Affair”, “Take a Break,” and “You Don’t Say” depict scenes of reconnection and joy. They are about fun Sunday afternoons sharing picnic lunches with family and listening and dancing to the beats of the drumming circle in their beloved park.
“Through travel, I seek influences, cultural centers, energies, new terrain and the power of both the spoken and unspoken.”– Alonzo Davis
“The allure of creating is finding places that I do not already know.”– Chee Keong Kung
Vulcan Gallery, Workhouse Center for the Arts, 9518 Workhouse Way, Lorton, VA, 22079
Open Latitudes: Mixed Media Works by Alonzo Davis and Chee Keong Kungpresents the work of two contemporary artists who share a commonality rooted in exploration, discovery and improvisation. The use of geometric forms, gestural mark-making, the exploration of the tension between 2 and 3D, natural and man-made materials as well as working in series are integral to both artists’ studio practices.
An enticing aspect of travel is leaving the familiar behind and experiencing a new place. Upon returning home, what was once familiar is somehow transformed through new eyes. Through their travels—literal and metaphorical–Davis and Kung have absorbed deep multi-cultural influences that have informed and enriched their work and processes. In the details and precision of their work, there is an expansiveness that extends beyond geographical and cultural boundaries to encompass the broader world.