Marginalia: the tapestries of Sarah Swett

I have been enchanted by the tapestry of Sarah Swett for a long time now. And if you've ever met Sarah, you'll have to agree with me that she is pretty enchanting herself. 

I was able to go see her new show at the Pacific Northwest Quilt and Fiber Arts Museum in La Conner, Washington last week. This is most likely the last time she'll be exhibiting her Rough Copy series all together and it is not to be missed.

This series of work consists of 13 large-format tapestries in which she weaves part of a novel she wrote. The story is fun to read in part because there are blanks in the narrative. You have to decide what happened between each vignette. The words are woven on various scraps of paper: hotel stationary, a grocery receipt, a library card. Some are burned, some are torn. There are coffee stains and ink splatters and you get to meet a very good-looking mule.

Here are some photos from the show. 

Sarah Swett, tapestry, Rough Copy #3: A Field Guide, Rough Copy #2: The Sketchbook, Rough Copy #1: Blue Dog Motel

Sarah Swett, Rough Copy #1: Blue Dog Motel (detail)

Sarah Swett, tapestry, Rough Copy #13: There (detail)

I love Rough Copy #4: Receipt. The text is written on the back of a grocery receipt. And you can see the text from the other side--like you do on a thin piece of paper. These pieces are for sale so if anyone wants to get me a great birthday present, this is the one I want. Who could resist any tapestry with the word "stob" right in it?!

Sarah Swett, tapestry, Rough Copy #4: Receipt

Sarah Swett, tapestry, Rough Copy #9: Red Paperclip, Rough Copy #8: Hallmark, Rough Copy #7: Days Begin, Rough Copy #6: Postage Due, Rough Copy #5: There was nothing.

Sarah Swett, tapestry, Rough Copy #9: Red Paperclip, Rough Copy #8: Hallmark, Rough Copy #7: Days Begin, Rough Copy #6: Postage Due, Rough Copy #5: There was nothing.

Sarah Swett, tapestry, Rough Copy #13: There, Rough Copy #12: Do Not Bend, Rough Copy #11: Villa Algernon.

There were many other marvelous pieces in the show including two tapestry books. Below is a video of her book Casting Off.

Sarah Swett, "It's Raining," said the Lady with the Alligator Purse (detail)

Sarah Swett, Back to Front

Visit Sarah's website HERE to see all of the Rough Copy pieces. Make sure to follow her blog while you're there. Her adventures in fiber are well worth a weekly read. She posts on Tuesdays--just so you know.

Trouble, right?