Having studied studio art at the U of Iowa and the U of Arizona, where her focus was on figure drawing, she took a one semester class in weaving, and in 1972, decided to work exclusively in fiber art. Well known for her tapestry garments and wall-pieces, her work has been widely shown and collected. Awards include the Mutterer Award at the Tucson Museum of Art’s “Arizona Biennial” in 1993 (1st Prize) and 1997 (3rd Prize), and a Tucson/Pima Arts Council Fellowship in 1995. Her tapestry work has been featured in Fiberarts, American Craft, Ornament, Surface Design Journal, Fiberarts Design Book Five, and Fiberarts Design Book 7.
In 2000, Barbara realized that life is short, put the loom in storage and began painting as she always knew she would. She is currently involved with paintings that are inspired by the textiles of the world. And, still fascinated by the body and its coverings, she is exploring collage with postage stamps, maps, and mixed media, which depict fanciful characters and costumes.
Recent local publications include Phoenix Home & Garden in the “Masters Of The Southwest” edition, 2005, and in The Tucson Weekly, a review of her “Paintings From The Antiquities Series”, which included paintings of ancient textiles and objects from the world-over, and she was recently featured on KUAT-TV’s “Arizona Illustrated”. Barbara’s work is in the collections of the Racine Art Museum and the Tucson Country Club, as well as private collections throughout the U.S., also the U.K. and South Korea.
Barbara lives to make art in Tucson, Arizona.
As I was working my way through life-drawing classes, I thought I would become a painter, but became intrigued with Fiber Art and weaving. I spent nearly thirty years working and exploring that path, while learning about Textile Arts from other cultures and other times. That led to a deep appreciation and respect for all those who hand-make and have made objects and textiles to be used in their lives.
Working with re-cycled buttons continues my connection to the world of Fiber Art, and brings to mind all of the people who wore those buttons over the years. The artworks symbolized people together while celebrating a common object. My paintings are homages to artisans and their hand-made textiles and other works. And my painted collages with re-cycled world stamps and maps speak of the similarities and uniqueness of us all, with sometimes humorous juxtapositions. Beauty rules all.