Ulla de Larios, Woven Art
Contact: Sally Houck, OCCA, 541-265-6569, firstname.lastname@example.org
Oregon Coast Council for the Arts will feature the weavings of Ulla de Larios in the Runyan Gallery at the Newport Visual Arts Center from October 7 to
October 29th. Woven Art includes two installations, “Crossings” and “Transparency?” and other pieces completed since de Larios received her MFA in
Textiles from San Francisco Art Institute in 2005. Everyone is invited to an Opening Reception for the Artist on October 7 from 5pm to 7pm.
Ulla de Larios was born in Sweden. “My attachment to fiber art and procedures is at the very core of who I am. I am a knitter, spinner, I crochet, embroider, dye and more. However, my focus lies in weaving, which I learned from my Grandmother in Sweden and which provides me with the most freedom and variety to create.” As an undergraduate, de Larios studied physics and math at Lunds Universitet, but moved to the United States and some years later graduated in 1990 with a BFA in Painting from the San Francisco Art Institute. She lives in Palo Alto with her husband, has two children and now a grandchild. She travels regularly to a small cottage in Sweden.
Through the process of making “home textiles” and clothing for her family, she learned the essential craftsmanship needed to expand and advance her weaving. “Loom-weaving, although strictly codified, involves an infinite number of choices in the selection of yarns, setts and structures and thus in possible expressions. My work is now concentrated on creating pieces with socio-political content using hand-woven textiles and images from the petroglyphs found in my native country.”
de Larios works with white or natural colored yarn, wrapping the warp or weft in areas as a resist and dyeing with indigo or uses the reverse technique, warp and weft painting, to get the solid areas of colors as well as the mixed borders in her work. She works on a sixteen-shaft computer aided loom that makes it possible to weave very fine fabrics as well as intricate patterns.
“The series “Crossings” deals with my immigrant status. The impressions from childhood and youth are the basis for a person’s identity and stay with you for the rest of your life. Moving to a new country, it is impossible to be fully integrated, instead we immigrants end up in what is known as “The Third Space,” the “In-between,” in between the new and the old that changes with time as we change with time.” Freely hanging panels circling slowly in the air currents explore this state of limbo and the parity of the two sides of the panels. “The loose weave structure shows the ambivalence of the position “In-between.” The little petroglyph humans in its middle are obvious references to the large part of the world’s population that is up-rooted each year.”
Ulla de Larios’s series “Transparency?” explores the difference between the transparency and the impenetrability of different weave structures and makes comparisons to the way society and governments work. “In Transparency?, the reactions of the different fibers, silk and wool, subjected to an identical process, parallel the impact the different administrations have on the state of the country: the silk retains its structure and is transparent, the wool narrows and collapses into a dense mass of impenetrable fibers.” These weavings are circular and also hang freely. “The five pieces that compose Transparency? are named Malfeasance, Hope, The Last Eight, The Next Eight? and Par for the Course. I leave it up to the audience to decide which one is which.”
de Larios has shown extensively in California and also Sweden in the last ten years, most recently in the 42nd Annual Textile Show” at the Olive Hyde Gallery in Fremont, California and has written for both US and Swedish publications. Her commissioned work is in the permanent collection at the Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula.
Admission to both galleries at the Newport Visual Art Center is free. Runyan Gallery hours are 11am to 5pm, Tuesday through Sunday. For additional information, call Sally Houck, OCCA Director/VAC, 541-265-6569.
1. “Transparency?” – Five pieces, 28″diameter x about 8’, 2007-09 Silk and wool, handwoven by Ulla de Larios
2. Hällristning Fossum – Damask figurative weavings by Ulla de Larios.
3. Crossing #4 – 46″x72″ Linen, 2004, handwoven by Ulla de Larios
4. Crossing #19 – 46″x46″x80″ Silk 2011, handwoven by Ulla de Larios