Today, I went back to Madrid, NM, to check out Johnsons of Madrid Galleries of Fine & Fiber Art. Diana & Mel Johnson have been in Madrid since the '70s--the beginning of the ghost town's rebirth as an arts community. I had a chance to talk to both of them--what a treat! Mel was working on a painting as he told me about his work at the Chicago Institute of Art. Diana told me stories of many of the fiber pieces on display. The fiber pieces include clothing, quilted pieces, painted silk, and weaving. In their gallery (a former coal truck repair garage from Madrid's coal-mining heyday) you can find the works of over 50 northern New Mexico fiber artists. I particularly enjoyed the work of Deidre Adams a quilt artist who heavily quilts her fabric first and then paints on this quilted "canvas." You can check out her work on her website. Diana said I should also check out the Tapestry Gallery (also in Madrid), so I did. Don't miss the Johnson's gallery if you are interested in seeing some fine fiber art.
If you are into yarn, you will enjoy a visit to the Tapestry Gallery which features the work of 30 New Mexico fiber artists. Hand-dyed yarn is available for purchase. They have hand-woven chenille clothing--sweaters, shawls, wraps and vests; rag rugs; artist dolls; woven copper pieces; woven tapestries, knitted hats, and poplar wall pockets. I'm not big into the "yarn" thing, but I did enjoy checking out this gallery.
My last stop of the day was at The Quilt Works, Inc. quilt shop in Albuquerque. The ladies at this shop were very nice. There is a good selection of fabrics, samples, notions, and books. The classroom area has some beautiful samples of what can be made in upcoming classes. Be sure to stop in if you are in the Albuquerque area.
I found out today that New Mexico has a Fiber Arts Trail. The governor of New Mexico, Bill Richardson, says, "We want you to experience fiber arts from "sheep to shawl" in New Mexico through these Arts Trails." The Trail consists of the work of more than 200 New Mexico fiber artists at 71 destinations along the trails. I'm not going to have time to check it out this time; but if you get the chance, it would be a great way to spend a vacation!