Thursday September 8, 2005

Frances Trombly has her day

Frances Trombly makes some of her work by hand, weaving and cross stitching; other pieces are created on a loom. Either way, it’s time-consuming stuff, and the woman has been busy lately. She’s just come off a well-received show at Tachme’s, has a current show at MoCA, and is in Hanging by a Thread at the Moore Space (opening tonight) and in Reduced at the Art and Culture Center of Hollywood (opening tomorrow).

Others have written about Trombly’s work much more eloquently then we’re going to, but let’s have a brief run-down. The work succeeds through a kind of clear-eyed pith, married to hard work. Say what you will, but work resonates when it presents itself as the result of effort spent, whether that effort be physical, mental, or (as here) both. Trombly uses several different fabric-related media, and carefully selects her subject matter to each one. The roughness and rigidity of plywood, for example, lends itself well to cross-stitching. There is a value in drawing attention to the medium in this sort of work which Trombly seems reluctant to do. Rumor has it that she considered recording her loom and playing back the sound for the installation at the Art and Culture Center, although ended up not doing so. A careful balancing act, perhaps?

More samples of her work can be seen on her web site (a not-too-bad flash design).

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  1. I Don't Know    Thu Sep 8, 09:16 PM #  


    The most interesting thing about this work is that we are so interested in it. Sewing is so novel nowadays considering our “busy lifestyle” (Of course this is a bullshit phrase – we were certainly busier several grandmother’s lives ago; when we had to spend a day preparing a meal, build houses and sew clothes.)

    Either way, it’s great that she’s good at what she does, but this “painstaking ephemera” stuff is deceptively easy. Easily conceived. Marketable, really.

  2. Kathleen    Fri Sep 9, 10:36 AM #  

    One of the flash sites that doesn’t mke me cranky!

    Sound of the loom? Sounds dubious . . .

    I love the plywood.

  3. alesh    Fri Sep 9, 12:44 PM #  

    The same guy designed her site that did Tachmes’ and other artist sites. Not bad, though the decision to use flash remains questionable – bloated donwload times, Google can’t index, no deep linking, etc etc.

    One particularly irksome thing about Frances’ site is that in the galleries the “thumbnails” are like 16×16 and grayscaled . . . completely useless, and even with broadband the individual pics take a long time to load.

  4. Lois Turms    Mon Sep 12, 03:42 PM #  

    What website? It opens up to a blank page. Very much like the exhibit at the Art and Culture Center of Hollywood, where the doors open to an empty gallery, and where her name on the wall is spelled “Francis,” like the Talking Mule.

  5. MadamE    Mon Sep 12, 10:05 PM #  

    Great use of pin knots and knot holes on that birch plywood! Ahh there I go reminiscing of my favorite web site: heh heh she said wood ….

  6. I Don't Know    Thu Sep 15, 06:20 PM #  

    Whatever, maybe the work’s ok.