Enjoy this stunning collection of woven baskets from the hand of artist Virginia Fisher, and visit her website to see more of her portfolio.
The copper basket series constantly evolves, and I have no idea where it will take me, but I know how it started. My mother is a metalsmith who taught me how to sew, draw and solder. So, I was looking to follow in her footsteps.
Initially, they let me into art school at Appalachian State University for Painting, but I wanted to do Metals. At first I couldn’t get into any of the metal classes, so I took Fiber Arts. Eventually, the three disciplines began to blend.
My work was crossing over, and I was brutally in love with copper and making vessels. Six months after graduation, I decided to set up my studio to make copper baskets.
I decided on a wire basket. It made the most sense to me when I was trying to combine all my interests. The copper wire is a strong line like in a drawing, but also flexible like many fibrous materials.
Over the years, I have expanded and experimented with many fibers and metalsmithing techniques. Coiling, felting, weaving, and sewing are a couple that come to mind. Incorporating screen and sheet metal into the baskets pulled me away from traditional baskets to woven trays and wall hangings.
The work began to dance the line of art and craft. I came to peace with the idea that my art will always pursue fine craft. Although my work is heavily influenced by my obsession with process, the basket series is based in a concept. The concept I meditate on is the idea of connectedness.
What techniques connect the metal pieces? What is the relationship between people and the baskets? As an independent artist, it is hard to explain that what I love most about what I do is connecting with people. Being able to make something that will be in other people’s daily lives is what lets me fall in love with every piece I make.
It doesn’t matter if the owner of my work remembers or knows me. All these people have copper baskets and are using them for different things. Maybe it helps people know they are not alone when they can grab one of my baskets from their counter and know that my hand was once there, and we are connected.