Nancy Cook Smith

Artist Statement

I make collages. I use a lot of floral and nature images. They are accessible to the viewer and offer a huge palette. Generally those organic bits are woven with a geometry that offers a sturdy scaffold for metaphors, feelings and concepts. I create a conversation based on the interaction of the textiles that I find, procure and have in my large collection. That conversation usually leads me down one of two paths — a surrealist narrative or a formalist’s concern where I build a new item from de-constructed ones. I rearrange and manipulate elements until they look right as a formal arrangement or psychological landscape. Sometimes the two converge or overlap and I can explore both ideas in one piece.The reused materials are cut-up, and, like an on-the-spot puzzle, composed. To a degree I am challenging painting. Some quilt makers have done this, but I am not a quilter. I am more a seamstress giving attitude and body to the cloth in front of me. The subjects are ideas on order and freedom.