Marie-Renée Otis, artist in residence in Paris, 

Fellow of the Council of Arts and Letters of Quebec 

The Thirteenth Week

Anne Woringer Quilter of art

Mrs Woringer waits for me at the top of the staircase of the 7 floor building where she lives and work. What an energetic and productive woman she is! 

And also, so generous. For me, she empties her dressers and cabinets to display her magnificent quilts. Mrs Woringer pioneered quilting in France in the ‘70s. At the beginning she designed traditional motifs but rapidly she innovated with new ideas to add light in her pieces. 

Because she was unable to find exactly the color of fabric she was looking for, Anne dyed herself her textiles. Those dyeing processes elaborate complex systems of enrolled, hidden, plated or tied up fabric to apply dye only on certain zones.

Later in her career, in her second phase of exploration, Anne Woringer proceeded in the reverse way. Instead of applying colors she managed to extract colors from manufactured fabrics, the bleaching process then began in her artistic expression. The results were surprising. How come different textiles, under the same bleaching treatment, may turn out brown, beige or simply white? Mrs Woringer used all those surprises in further quilted pieces.

With all those processes, Anne’s pieces of art are truly elaborate work. Once the different textiles are assembled the embroidery's part begins. She uses chain stitch; straight lines so dense they become a new fabric by itself; or at the opposite tiny stitches in the way of Japanese Sashiko. 

Her style distinguishes itself by the labyrinth shape designs. They are her favorite motifs. And one can be blissfully lost in the contemplation of those tiny roads full of circumvolutions.

Grasping the ensemble, Woringer’s quilts give an impression of lightness by the choice of textures and colors. In reality, they weight a lot, composed of multiple layers of linings and fleeces. The final results irradiate imposing presences, they liberate a sensation of energy.

There it is: Anne Woringer’s pieces of art generate the same energy as the artist herself!

I wonder, is it always the case with every piece of art?

Anne Woringer


Abysses, closer

Abysses, detail

Maryanne patch
Maryanne patch, detail

Open House of the Painting Artist Darina Yaneva, from Bulgaria

Darina stayed one month at Cité international des arts, in Paris (where I also reside).

Darina likes gardens. Every painting in her studio shows scenes of nature, gardens and green lawns. In Paris, she mainly painted the Jardins du Luxembourg, an astonishing park near the University of Sorbonne (on the left shore).

First, Darina sketches scenes with colored pencils. Later she reworks her sketches in larger scales but this time with dry pastel sticks. This media gives soft colors and a velvet texture.

Darina’s husband and herself travel all around Europe for drawing and painting. Where ever are their journeys, they paint mainly gardens as subjects. 

Mrs Yaneva succeeds to make abstraction of heavy traffic, the busy boulevards, the solicitations and stimulations of the cities to only focus on parks, gardens trees and the green lawns.

Sea of Branches

Lelièvre, a Specialized Boutique in Historical Textiles

On the second floor of a posh building, I had the opportunity to visit, the Lelièvre’s show-room. Like in a museum I could admire hangings, large size samples, hanging from ceilings to floor.

You desire a Louis XIII interior decor?
You can choose among flower, fruit and bird designs.

You prefer Louis XIV style?
There is a whole lot of historical scenes and mythological tableau.

The style Louis XV is easily recognizable by the sinuous lines adorned with blossomed flowers and motifs floating around. 

After the French Revolution, palm and rose flower designs are specific to the Directoire and the Empire eras.

Later on in History, large flower wreath designs on simple dark backgrounds characterize the Restauration style.

This is fascinating how political regimens influenced the aesthetic of embroidery.  

What kept my attention the most was the collection Patrimony of Tassinari & Chatel (a silk weaver family firm from Lyon). Lelièvre owns thousands of samples and historical documents allowing modern fabric craftsmen to precisely reconstitute and weave those exceptional textiles from the former centuries.

Contemporary lavish interior decors of rich people may benefit of these rarities. More widely, the Patrimony Collection procures reliable knowledge for theatre's and cinema's decors or for museum’s historical reconstitutions. 

Of course, there is a price to have access to these inestimable fabrics. The authenticity touch, the 100% silk thread, the variety and the richness of colors, the French savoir-faire, the high end quality have a price authentically huge and impressive.

Textiles manufactured by Lelièvre’s, from the Tassinari & Chatel collection,
close-up of weaving

Style Louis XIV, set up of fabric yardage

Style Louis XIV, set up of fabric yardage

Louis XIV style, damask silk fabric, closer

Louis XIV style, damask silk fabric, detail

Louis XV style, damask fabric, silk and cotton

Louis XV style, damask fabric, silk and cotton, close-up

Directoire style, lampas fabric 100% silk

Directoire style, lampas fabric 100% silk, detail

The photo research and the translation are made by Lucie Daigneault

1 comment:

  1. What marvelous quilts! How wonderful it must have been to see them in person!


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The Embroiderers' Association of Canada (EAC) is a national non-profit educational organization whose purpose is to have a fellowship of persons who enjoy needlework and wish to learn and share their knowledge; and thereby to work towards maintaining higher standards of design, colour and workmanship.

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