Vicki Essig, an emerging artist from Asheville, NC, received the 2014 Adrianna Farrelli Prize for Excellence in Fiber Art.
How did you first get interested in working in your medium?
As a new mom, and new to the mountains of western North Carolina, I went looking for community. Wanting to explore my creative side, I started taking classes in the professional crafts department at the local community college. I fell in love with the loom, its quiet rhythm and contemplative nature.
What is special about the medium you work in? How does it inform the work you create?
The fine silk used in my weaving provides a delicate yet strong foundational layer. As I incorporate natural objects I can create a quiet, peaceful place to explore what is usually overlooked.
What do you love about your workspace or studio?
A lot of my workspace is in the woods. I hike everyday, gathering and hunting. I’m always excited to empty my pockets onto the tables of my studio.
What was the inspiration for a recent piece?
Over the Christmas holiday I was happy to spend time with my mother-in-law. She is wise and warm. She meditates, walks and offers a kind smile. Walking in a park near her home I took the opportunity to collect some local dogbane. The pods were dried, brown and gold, with airy wispy seeds. They are now captured between glass, reminding me of that day.
Can you share a personal highlight of the 2014 PMA Craft Show — other than winning the award, of course!
I am always happy to share stories about my work and how I make it. I am often surprised by the diversity of people that are attracted to my work. At the PMA show a very elderly, extraordinary gentleman engaged with me for sometime. I now wonder where he hung the piece he took with him and imagine his kind nature keeping it company.