Past Exhibitions

Traditional Arts of the Bedouin

January 28 – April 29, 2017

The Saudi Arabian Bedouin, or the Bedu, are iconic nomads of the Middle East. Immortalized in films such as Lawrence of Arabia, Arabian Bedouin have captured the imagination of the Western world since their first contact with Europeans during Napoleon's conquest of Egypt in the 18th century. This romantic myth of the Bedu wanderer, who wears flowing robes while riding a camel in search of food and water in the desert, is far from accurate. Bedouin people are diverse, skilled craftspeople, dedicated to family, hospitality, and honor. This exhibition focuses on aspects of traditional Bedouin life that survive today: home and family life, clothing and jewelry, and the importance of one's herds to survival and prosperity.

Visitors to the exhibition will learn how Bedouin arts and crafts frequently bridge the gap between aesthetic and utilitarian purposes, as well as recognize the unique tenacity of Bedouin traditions in an ever-changing political, social, and environmental landscape.

Traditional Arts of the Bedouin reveals the Bedouin to be artists with a legacy of incredible work, not widely known outside their own cultures. The featured jewelry shows each artist’s use of obscure techniques, such as crenellation, to produce intricate pieces. Bedouin weaving, still crafted on a stick loom, demonstrates ancient knowledge of natural dyes and fibers, and traditional patterns; while the women who create textiles use native stitches, not known outside the Bedouin world, to embroider meaning into the objects.

The exhibition, curated by Dr. Amber Clifford-Napoleone of the University Museum at the University of Central Missouri, includes approximately fifty-three artworks and artifacts, from elaborately embroidered textiles and embellished metalwork to ceremonial coffee accouterments and incense burners; as well as several photographs depicting Bedouin craftspersons at work.

A program of ExhibitsUSA, a national division of Mid-America Arts Alliance and The National Endowment for the Arts.

Transformers:  Re-contextualizing Our Material Culture

September 17-December 17, 2016

Contemporary artists Jodie Mack, Garry Noland, Julie Peppito and Gerry Trilling regard material culture as raw material. They use it to create artwork of a high order, informed by its fraught, untidy, intimate origins - paintings, sculptures, films, and tapestries in which the ordinary stuff of our lives becomes splendid and strange.

This exhibition is curated by contemporary artist China Marks and presented in conjunction with Radiant Messenger: Drawings by China Marks on view at the Foosaner Art Museum (October 22, 2016 – January 7, 2017).

Radical Elements (by Studio Art Quilt Associates)

May 28 – August 27, 2016

Our physical world is created out of the chemical elements, from hydrogen to platinum to arsenic. For this exhibition, each of the selected artists created a new work influenced by an element from the periodic table. Inspirations came from anything relating to that element, whether it is a play on the name, its color or the products made from it. Both representational and abstract works were welcomed.

The artists were also asked to move quilting beyond the usual materials of fabric and thread, exploring the function and decorative properties of different surfaces and stitching materials. This exhibition was the first to embrace the newly expanded definition of an art quilt and is a signature exhibition for the international organization Studio Art Quilt Associates (SAQA).

 Exhibition sponsored in memory of Judy Roach.

A View Within: The Collaboration of Two Fiber Artists

May 28 – August 27, 2016

 Now in its sixth year, A View Within is the result of a collaborative project by contemporary artists Paula Chung and Karen Rips. The artists’ fascination with the human body, as revealed through advances in medical imagery, is the primary inspiration for this exhibition of tapestries. A View Within was originally driven by individual images as they became available. However, the success of this project has resulted in more body images being made available, allowing the artists to visually explore the body’s systems and functions in depth.

 The Center is pleased to present 12 original works by Rips and Chung during summer 2016 in conjunction with the Studio Art Quilt Associates’ exhibition Radical Elements.

Reimagined: Innovations in Fiber with Alex Trimino and Carrie Sieh

January 23 - May 7, 2016

Reimagined presents the work of Alex Trimino and Carrie Sieh - Miami-based contemporary artists whose manipulation of fiber is characterized by their use of experimental materials. By challenging traditionally conceived “craft” materials and redefining their context, sourced items such as neon lights and VHS tape are reinvented, showcasing the role of textiles as a visually communicative and diverse art form.

Sieh and Trimino draw on textiles’ domestic associations to inform and develop their respective artistic perspectives. Their work, influenced by themes including sexuality, gender, and culture, is also distinguished by experimentation with the principles of mathematics, coding and technology.

 This exhibition and select youth programming are generously sponsored by R.B. Case Consulting. Additional youth program support provided by The Walter E. and Judith Schwab Fund of the Community Foundation for Brevard.

About the Artists:
Alex Trimino creates illuminated fiber-based sculptures and installations. Her work re-contextualizes the traditional use of colloquial, lo-tech crafts; crochet, knittings and weavings exploring social views on civilization, technology and gender. In her work old things, old ways and new technologies commingle together; exploring how we connect to reality today. She uses embroidery and technology, creating a connection between past and present. In 2013 Trimino's work was part of "OpenArt" International Art Symposium, Sweden and her solo exhibition "Dark Light" was presented at Läns Museum, West Gallery, Örebro, Sweden.

Carrie Sieh is an interdisciplinary artist whose work is rooted in textiles, technology, and history. Exhibition sites include Miami International Airport, Bienes Museum of the Modern Book, Coral Gables Museum, MDC Museum of Art & Design, Charles Deering Estate, Art & Culture Center of Hollywood, and David Castillo Gallery. Collections include Bernice Steinbaum (Miami), Francie Bishop Good & David Horvitz (Ft. Lauderdale FL) Mandy Patinkin & Kathryn Grody (NYC), the James Hotel (Miami Beach), United Way Miami-Dade, and the Leland Tea Company (San Francisco), as well as private collections in the United States and Uruguay. Her practice focuses primarily on the roles of technology, psychology, and political economy in human behavior.

Light and Shadow: Contemporary Fiber Art by Hye Shin

September 19 – December 14, 2015

Born and raised in South Korea, the contemporary fiber artist Hye Shin is known for her large, richly textured wall hangings and, more recently, her sculptural installations. She has participated in numerous solo and group exhibitions, exhibiting nationally and internationally for many years. Shin has been teaching at Crealdé School of Art since 2003 and is the founder of the Focus on Fiber Art initiative. The Center is pleased to present Shin’s wall hangings, embroidery, and sculpture installations during fall 2015.

Nature is a primary source of inspiration in Shin’s body of work; rather than conveying a literal representation of it, her abstract weaving and atmospheric installations are focused on expressing a sense of place, mood or feeling. “When I struggle with my life, I am drawn toward nature…that inspires me with a beautiful and poignant dialogue.” This dialogue results in the transformation of source material into condensed geometrical constructions.

The pieces created for this exhibition are characterized by the dichotomy of the natural world (light vs. shadow, sadness vs. joy, life vs. death and recovery). The artist believes these qualities are inherent to nature and critical to understanding and appreciating its beauty.

Shin’s artistic process is characterized by layered weaving and expressive surface design. She knits, sews, dyes, and manipulates contrasting materials including linen, horsehair, and paper in attempt to convey the balance that can be achieved through fiber art.

This exhibition is generously sponsored in part by R.B. Case Consulting with youth program support provided by the John K. & Julia R. Roach Fund of the Community Foundation for Brevard, in loving memory of Julia Roach.

 

Southern Accents

May 16 - August 22, 2015

The Ruth Funk Center for Textile Arts is pleased to host the exhibition Southern Accents presented by the southeast region of Studio Art Quilt Associates (SAQA) from May 16 through Aug. 22.

The opening of the exhibit is held in conjunction with SAQA’s inaugural regional conference, “Studio to Gallery,” on the Florida Tech campus May 15-16.

The artworks in Southern Accents encompass a range of fiber art techniques and styles, from realistic to abstract. Participating artists were asked the question, ‘What makes life in the South special?’ and then encouraged to take those qualities and celebrate them in an art quilt.

The exhibition was juried by Sandra Sider of the Texas Quilt Museum in La Grange, Texas.

Modern Twist: Contemporary Japanese Bamboo Art

January 31 – April 25

This exhibition explores the evocative, sensual, and sculptural power of contemporary bamboo art.

Bamboo is a quintessential part of Japanese culture, shaping the country’s social, artistic, and spiritual landscape. Although bamboo is a prolific natural resource, it is a challenging artistic medium. There are fewer than 100 professional bamboo artists in Japan today. Mastering the art form requires decades of meticulous practice while learning how to harvest, split, and plait the bamboo. Modern Twist brings 38 exceptional works by 17 artists to U.S. audiences, displaying many of these technically innovative and imaginatively crafted works for the first time.

Since 1967, six bamboo artists have been named Living National Treasures. The Japanese government created this award after World War II in an effort to celebrate and preserve the nation’s traditions and culture. Only two living bamboo artists —Modern Twist’s Katsushiro Sōhō (2005) and Fujinuma Noboru (2012)—currently hold this title.

In addition, Modern Twist features works by other visionary artists: Matsumoto Hafū, Honma Hideaki, Ueno Masao, Uematsu Chikuyū, Nagakura Ken’ichi, Tanabe Chikuunsai III, Tanabe Yōta, Tanabe Shōchiku III, Tanioka Shigeo, Tanioka Aiko, Honda Shōryū, Mimura Chikuhō, Nakatomi Hajime, Sugiura Noriyoshi, and Yonezawa Jirō.

Modern Twist demonstrates that in the hands of master bamboo artists, a simple grass is transformed into a sculptural art. The exhibition celebrates these artists who have helped to redefine a traditional craft as a modern genre, inventing unexpected new forms and pushing the medium to groundbreaking levels of conceptual, technical, and artistic ingenuity.

The exhibition is curated by Dr. Andreas Marks, head of the Department of Japanese and Korean Art and Director of the Clark Center at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts. The exhibition was generously supported by the E. Rhodes & Leona B. Carpenter Foundation. The catalogue was supported by the Nomura Foundation, Japan Foundation, Los Angeles, Eric and Karen Ende, Alexandra and Dennis Lenehan, Gilda and Henry Buchbinder, and the Snider Family Fund.  The local presentation of this exhibition made possible in part by a grant from The Japan Foundation of New York.

Embellished: A Celebration of Wearable Art

September 13 – December 13, 2014

In commemoration of its fifth anniversary, the Ruth Funk Center presents over forty examples of contemporary wearable art by artists Ann Clarke, Marina Dempster, Kerr Grabowski and Center namesake and benefactor Ruth Funk. Works on display include art to wear, conceptual sculpture, accessories and jewelry that highlight the diversity of the wearable art movement and emphasize the innovation of surface design.

Embellished Adopt-A-Coat Sponsors:

Nancy Abernathy
Kathleen Along
Kaye Boyer Ryan
Jan and Bob Case
Pamela Dettmer
Georgette Walsh Diaz
Anne Faye
Bette George
Nita Grisham
Betty Herget
Tess Hughes
Leslie Temmen
Susan Lundberg
John Palumberi
Lisa Perdigao
Adrienne Meyer
Sharon Mischker
Norma Newman
Martha Sinclair

Learn more about “adopting” one of Ruth Funk’s couture creations here!

Florida in Fabric II & Oil Stains: A Series by Eleanor McCain

May 24 - August 23, 2014

FLORIDA IN FABRIC II is presented by the Ruth Funk Center for Textile Arts to promote an appreciation of quilt making as an art form. Art accepted for this exhibition exemplifies innovation in quilting and surface design techniques as well as excellence in artistic composition and craftsmanship.

Oil Stains: A Series by Eleanor McCain features fourteen quilts representing the artist’s reaction to the 2010 BP oil spill and its effect on Florida’s Gulf Coast. The lyrically abstract quilts are literally stained, producing a powerful visual statement.

Tying the Knot: Global Wedding Costume and Ritual

January 18 – April 26, 2014

Tying the Knot features wedding ensembles and accessories from Asia, Africa, Europe and North America. The exhibit showcases the varying customs, textiles and fashion associated with marriage around the world and highlights the cultural significance of this often monumental event.

Textiles & Culture: Highlights from the Permanent Collection

September 14 - December 14, 2013

Since its opening in August 2009, the Ruth Funk Center for Textile Arts has amassed a permanent collection of over 1000 objects. These unique textile pieces and accessories reflect a collection dedicated to the promotion of fiber arts from across the centuries and around the world. The exhibit features highlights from the Center’s collection including South African Ndebele aprons, Japanese Meiji-era kimono, and Central American embroidery.

Masters 2 by Studio Art Quilt Associates

May 18 – August 24, 2013

The Ruth Funk Center for Textile Arts is please to host Studio Art Quilt Associates’ (SAQA) newest fiber art show: Masters 2. In 2008, Lark Books added a new publication to its Master Works series, Masters: Art Quilts, written and curated by Martha Sielman, the Executive Director of Studio Art Quilt Associates. It quickly became one of the most successful selling books in the Lark series. SAQA traveled the accompanying exhibition of art quilts throughout the United States to rave reviews.

The 37 quilt artists included in the exhibition have proven themselves to be masters of this exciting art form, and hail from all over the globe. The artworks encompass a broad range of fiber art techniques and styles, from realistic to abstract. The subject matter varies from a study of Miles Davis intent on blowing his horn to an homage to New York City’s wrought iron tree gates.

Masters 2 will provide a provocative and stimulating museum experience.

ReDress: Upcycled Style by Nancy Judd

January 19 – April 27, 2013

Like it or not, we are a wasteful society. We buy, we consume, we throw things away. Most of our everyday purchases have disposable packaging, our mailboxes are jammed with junk advertising campaigns, our shirt has a rip and we simply buy another. Trash is just a part of our throw-away culture. Artist Nancy Judd thinks there is a better way.

Judd loves the challenge of making garbage into elegant and glamorous garments and inspiring people to look differently at waste. Ms. Judd has been commissioned by major companies such as Target, Coca Cola Company and Delta Air Lines to create not only magnificent works of art, but to also convey the value of consumer consciousness and the future of our planet. Her creations have been exhibited worldwide and have caught the attention of major media including USA Today and CNN. In addition, one of her cre­ations, the Obamanos Coat, constructed from Obama campaign door hangers and fit to the size of our 44th President, has recently been accepted into the permanent collection of the Smithsonian Institution.

The Ruth Funk Center is pleased to present 18 of Judd’s unique, thought-provoking creations to the greater Central Florida community.

This exhibition has been organized by Nancy Judd, and is circulated through GuestCurator Traveling Exhibition.

Lead Sponsor:

Battle Worn: Masculine Ideals and Military Identity in Modern Japanese Textiles

September 8 - December 15, 2012

National duty and familial honor played an essential role in shaping the perception of Japanese soldiers in the 19th and early 20thcenturies. During military conflict, loved ones often dedicated unique textiles that accompanied men into battle. These symbolically charged items provided courage and protection as the soldier journeyed to war and often memorialized his triumphant return in victory or death.

Battle Wornwill feature over 50 military textiles, hand-painted on cotton and silk, from the private collection of Dr. and Mrs. Michael Bortner. Objects presented reflect the development of a national military identity rooted in cultural tradition. Highlights include army and navy celebration banners, “good luck” flags,” “one-thousand” stitch belts, uniforms, and children’s toys.

Florida in Fabric: Wish You Were Here!

May 19 – August 18, 2012

FLORIDA IN FABRIC is presented by the Ruth Funk Center for Textile Arts to promote an appreciation of quilt making as an art form and to provide Florida quilters with an opportunity to display their quilts in the premier textile arts center of the state. Art accepted for this exhibition will exemplify innovation in quilting and surface design techniques as well as excellence in artistic composition and craftsmanship.

Yvonne Porcella: Quilt Selections 1986-2012

Presented in conjunction with Florida in Fabric: Wish You Were Here! Yvonne Porcella: Quilt Selections 1986-2012will feature quilts from the artist’s recent retrospective at the Carnegie Arts Center in Turlock, Calif., as well as contemporary work inspired by the state of Florida. Porcella, founder and past President of the Board of Directors of Studio Art Quilt Associates, has taught and lectured throughout the United States, Canada, Australia, Europe and Japan. Her quilts are in the permanent collections of numerous museums, including the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, Ga., the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Museum of Arts and Design in New York City and The Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian Institution, Washington D.C.

Traditional Textiles of India

January 21 - April 28, 2012

India’s long and varied history has produced a stunning collection of textile traditions. From the domestic to the ceremonial space, these woven materials convey a unique perspective on adornment.

Traditional Textiles of India, co-curated with the Asian Cultural Association, features vibrant textiles from regions across India including Gujarat, Orissa, Punjab, and Rajasthan. Embroidered phulkaris, elegant saris, and block-printed linens illustrate an exceptional tradition of handcrafted skill.

Highlights from the Funk Center’s permanent collection are presented along with objects on loan from private collections.

INTERWOVEN: Contemporary Textile Art by Alejandrina Cué, Andrea Donnelly, and Jennifer Glass

September 10 - December 17, 2011

INTERWOVENfeatures the work of three contemporary artists—Alejandrina Cué, Andrea Donnelly and Jennifer Glass—whose visual imagery exploits the inherent quality of fabric materials to portray both the fragility and depth of the human psyche.

BRITISH BOLTS: ARTISTS' FABRICS OF THE MID-CENTURY

May 21 – August 27, 2011

The textile industry in post-World War II Britain changed dramatically in contrast to the monotony of what the industry had to offer prior to 1951.

Postwar efforts to give Britons a feeling of recovery and progress and the promotion of better-quality “national” design led to the commissioning of artist-designed textiles. As this exhibit demonstrates, the result was an explosion of bold and innovative styles and more painterly textiles that demonstrated the unique potential of screen printing, with its ability to capture the quality of brush-stroked color.

British Bolts, curated from the extensive private collection of H. Kirk Brown III and Jill A Wiltse, examines the variety of aesthetic influences and approaches of men and women designers of the period. Mid-20th-century artists featured in this exhibition include male designers Terence Conran, Marino Marini, Henry Moore, John Piper, and William Scott and women designers like Lucienne Day, Jacqueline Groag and Paule Vézelay.

Curated by Shanna Shelby

LITTLE BLACK DRESS: SELECTIONS FROM THE COSTUME MUSEUM OF CANADA

January 15 – April 23, 2011

Little Black Dress traces the origins of this iconic garment from mourning attire to chic wardrobe essential, with over 45 key historic examples.

Starting with the 1880's, the exhibit will highlight the stylistic changes and popular trends of each decade through the 1990's.

The little black dress is represented as a symbol of the modern era, a potent expression of women’s identity and liberation through changing times.

The majority of dresses will be on loan from the extensive collection of the Costume Museum of Canada in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Once a major hub on the trading routes from Montreal to the West coast, Winnipeg was a garment manufacturing center.

The Canadian pieces will be complemented with examples from the permanent collection of the Ruth Funk Center for Textile Arts. Dresses on display will include designers such as Chanel, Oscar de la Renta and Arnold Scaasi.

FABRIC OF LIFE: TEXTILES OF LATIN AMERICA

September 11 – December 18, 2010

Dazzling and colorful textiles have constituted important forms of aesthetic and ethnic expression throughout Latin America’s diverse historic and cultural landscape.

This exhibition illustrates these stunningly complex and colorful textile genres with examples from Mexico to Peru. Hand-painted Amazonian weavings; Panamanian molas; and indigenous costumes from Guatemala and Bolivia illustrate the vibrant traditions that have survived through centuries of modernization.

Highlights from the Funk Center’s permanent collection will be presented along with objects on loan from private collections.

STYLING THE MODERN: FINE ART MEETS FASHION

May 8 - August 21, 2010

This exhibit features modernist scarves produced by the famous Ascher studio in post WWII London and now part of the Jill A. Wiltse and H. Kirk Brown III Collection. Organized and curated by guest curator, Shanna Shelby, the three foot square scarves were printed in limited editions of two to six hundred each; the screens were destroyed after printing.

The scarves are an extraordinary combination of fine art, fashion, and printmaking. The Aschers collaborated with the artists and printers to produce a fascinating yet difficult translation into fabric.

SPEAKING WITH THREAD: THE NARRATIVE OF TEXTILES

January 30 - April 24, 2010

Speaking with Thread: The Narrative of Textiles features selections from the private collections of Jafar Falasiri and William and Norma Canelas Roth, as well as pieces from the museum's permanent collection.

The exhibition features textiles that present stories through their imagery and symbolism.

COAT COUTURE: INSPIRATION TO CREATION

August 29 - December 12, 2009

As its inaugural exhibition, the new Ruth Funk Center for Textile Arts will feature wearable art created by our generous benefactor, Ruth E. Funk. Ruth Funk, who began creating her wearable art in the 1980s, uses the coat as her main means of expression. Funk's couture coats highlight the remarkable decorative fabrics created by indigenous peoples from Guatemala to Japan, fabrics that are the inspiration for her designs. Coat Couture positions her wearable art in the context of global textiles. This exhibition aims to present these indigenous textiles as a backdrop to the inspiration so often found in modern art and fashion.

To view more photos from this installation, click here.

Vest with shells and raffia by Ruth Funk Coat Couture Exhibition Mud and Kente cloth jacket by Ruth Funk L2009.1.10

Vest with shells and raffia by Ruth Funk L2009.1.7

Photo by Dominic Agostini

Coat Couture Exhibition

Mud and Kente cloth jacket by Ruth Funk L2009.1.10

Photo by Dominic Agostini

KIMONO: A TRANSITION TO MODERNITY

February 2 - April 25, 2009

Funk Textile Gallery Crawford Building, Room 405

Featuring a selection of recent gifts from the collection of William and Norma Canelas Roth, Kimono: A Transition to Modernity, exhibits kimono and accessories from pre- and post- WWII. The exhibition highlights the impact of Western influence on traditional Japanese culture through fashion and design.

To see more photos from this installation, click here.

Young woman's formal kimono (furisode), Japan, Taisho Period, 2007.23.11 Kimono: Transition to Modernity Exhibition

Young woman's formal kimono(furisode), Japan, Taisho Period, 2007.23.11

Photo by Dominic Agostini

Kimono: Transition to Modernity Exhibition

PATTERNS OF LIFE: KUBA CLOTH AND DESIGN

August 18 – December 12, 2008

Funk Textiles Gallery Crawford Building, Room 405

Details: Kuba Cloth; Woven raffia cloth with reverse appliquéd geometric shapes. From: Democratic Republic of the Congo (formerly Zaire) Size: 12‘ 6“ L. x 28“ W.

Details: Kuba Cloth; Woven raffia cloth with reverse appliquéd geometric shapes. From: Democratic Republic of the Congo (formerly Zaire) Size: 12‘ 6“ L. x 28“ W.

THE ART OF FASHION

February 21 – July 3, 2008

Funk Textiles Gallery Crawford Building, Room 405

Includes whimsical creations inspired by the wearable art movement: jewelry by the Florida Tech gallery's namesake, Ruth Funk and coats by Washington state weaver, Anita Luvera Mayer.

The Art of Fashion exhibit Silk yarns and dyed-to-match raffia. 25” W x 50” L
The Art of Fashion exhibit Silk yarns and dyed-to-match raffia. 25” W x 50” L
1988. Gift of the artist.

BEADWORK AND FIBER ARTS FROM CAMEROON AND SOUTH AFRICA

August 27, 2007 - January 25, 2008

Funk Textiles Gallery Crawford Building, Room 405

Objects on display include colorful beaded wedding capes, bags, woven skirts, belts and a headdress. Items come from the Ndebele, Thembu and Zulu tribes of South Africa and from Cameroon.

Recent Gifts from William D. and Norma Canelas Roth

Girl’s apron, Ndebele, South Africa, 12 5/8” x Girl's skirt, or apron, from South Africa and the Thembu tribe. Hand-woven cloth, brass rings, glass beads, leather, c. 1930-1940.
Girl’s apron, Ndebele, South Africa, 12 5/8” x
16 1/2”. Canvas, fiber, glass beads, c. 1960.
Girl's skirt, or apron, from South Africa and the Thembu tribe. Hand-woven cloth, brass rings, glass beads, leather, c. 1930-1940.