As I was writing Hoopla, I became fascinated with the long tradition of Chinese hair embroidery ‘Moxiu’ and Victorian mourning jewelry which was often crafted with the hair of lost loved ones. Contemporary examples are always fascinating to me, so when Kate Kretz alerted me to her art show, I was instantly intrigued:
“This Sharp World…”, a solo exhibition by artist Kate Kretz, opens this week. The exhibition features embroideries made with human hair, edgy embroidery employing extensive stumpwork and dense layers of French Knots, as well as paintings incorporating embroidery and silverpoint drawings on found silver objects.
The exhibition will be on until June 2nd at at Hardcore Art Contemporary Space in Miami
A visual catalog of work from the exhibition can be seen at
Kretz’s hair embroideries were featured in the “Pricked: Extreme Embroidery” exhibition at the Museum of Arts & Design in NYC. Her embroidery has been reviewed / featured in the New York Times, Surface Design Magazine, 1626 Magazine, (Guangzhou, China), American Craft Magazine, Fiber Arts Magazine, and PASAJES DISEÑO, a Spanish Design Magazine, and chosen as the cover image for the “The Chaffey Review”, an LA-based literary magazine.
Kretz is best known for her 2006 painting, “Blessed Art Thou”, depicting Angelina Jolie as the Virgin Mary hovering above a Wal-Mart. The painting has appeared in every major newspaper in the world, all the major news networks, and continues to appear internationally in textbooks across disciplines.
Books by Leanne Prain
Yarn Bombing: The Art of Crochet and Knit Graffiti
Co-authored with Mandy Moore
Hoopla: The Art of Unexpected Embroidery
Available now from Arsenal Pulp Press.
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