Alphabet Soup (series 1)
2023, baby yarn
$25 per letter (build your own)
Chicago Artist Coalition
Can solace be found in the threads of our past? In Thresholds, two artists, both imaginative world-builders, use fiber as a first language to create immersive and interactive environments within which they explore memory, identity and human connection. Soft materials, bright colors and a playful energy inspired by childhood nostalgia collide.
Eseosa Edebiri works with very tactile elements to create fantastical worlds that simultaneously evoke a sense of home. Playing with ideas of space, time, and potentiality, she creates portals—visible, conceptual or otherwise—to break through to the other side. Her intention? To touch on autonomy and chronic illness by reintegrating color in society. Leading viewers on a journey through the looking glass, she uses thread as a compass and as a metaphor for hope, change and a step toward healing from trauma that’s not just personal, but intergenerational.
Becca Thomas is a queer disabled artist who takes their experience navigating society in a divergent body-mind as a point of departure. Through fiber art, they create a home when none is to be found, carry their grief, and build new worlds in which they can reside. What do you do when your world falls apart? Thomas chooses to make work that centers on the labyrinthine journey of grief induced by chronic illness and pain. It embodies the internal turmoil encountered when your entire existence is scrutinized for the sake of survival. And it reflects a contracting world—a consequence of systemic ableism and inaccessibility.
Through vividly-colored ensembles featuring family memorabilia, tongue-in-cheek quotes and intricate fiber techniques, Thresholds—an Ariadne’s thread of sorts—highlights craft as a source of self-reflection—an intentional journey to acceptance, healing and ultimately transformation. Both artists, heavily drawing on personal narratives, aim to dismantle societal norms, pretenses and assumptions about trauma, chronic illness and disability. And by creating work that is deeply honest, and insightful, they challenge their (and the viewer’s) state of being and perception of self.
Curated by Vasia Rigou
Images courtesy of James Hosking unless stated otherwise