Fiber artist Kevan Lunney creates a fascinating body of work based on archaeology and ancient artifacts. Enjoy her portfolio and see more by visiting her website.
Fabric + Paint + Thread and curiosity are the ingredients of my work. My Archeology series is about communication and leaving a legacy of wisdom. I imagine these pieces to be excavated documents from past civilizations which reach out to us with messages, and also documents from our present which have been discovered in the future.
My wide angle view of time is meant to provoke the idea that we cannot afford to act without careful consideration.
We can be profoundly affected by considering both the past and the future, and make better decisions for the now.
Inspiration came in the year 2006 when I heard a radio program which sent me on a new trajectory. In 1896 a cache of 50,000 papyrus documents was discovered buried 30 feet deep in rubbish mounds in Egypt. These documents represented 1000 years of daily records, news and even jokes. My pieces are questioning, what is of value? What do we want to keep and pass down? How can we preserve our wisdom? Has not the wisdom of the ages already been recorded? Are we listening to it?
I am also inspired by the work of the African sculptor El Anatsui and Columbian weaver Olga de Amaral.
Ancient forms of writing fascinate me. The newspaper is one universal way to convey text. The first pieces in the series were patterned after the layout of the New York Times. Archeology #’s 6, 7, 3 is an example.
The Chinese system of I-Ching has an interesting format of 3 lines set above 3 lines called a hexagram. I began using this as a point of reference to create paragraphs which create a structure behind the circle for the larger pieces.
The circle in my work is an Enso seen in Zen Buddhist painting. It is a simple sweep of a brush with a bold beginning and a wisp of a tail which I practice with a large brush with water on the hot wood of the backyard deck. Belying its simplicity is a rich history of meaning. It speaks to beginnings which give way to endings and endings which give way to beginnings.
While Archeology #15 was in process, I witnessed an eclipse of the moon on a frigid December 2010 night in New Jersey. Thoughts of eternity, beginnings and endings and of my own time being just a speck were noted and added to my appreciation of the circle.
I very much enjoy being commissioned to make pieces which honor and memorialize loved ones.
This piece records the names of the family.
My goals are to continue to sell my work through gallery exhibits, and to share my experience through teaching and books. I welcome special projects.
My work has been exhibited in the United States, Europe and Africa. I will be represented by MEK gallery at the Sculptural Object and Functional Art Fair in Chicago October 2013.