SISTERS ACROSS THE SEA
FIBER ARTS EXHIBIT
Adowa Dancer of the Ashanti Kingdom, Eunimak Fashion
Sisters Across The Sea Fiber Arts Exhibit at Park Circle Gallery in the Old Village in North Charleston, SC is a celebration of the Motherline through dialogue between African American and Ghanaian women fiber artists, Cookie Washington and Eunice Maku Ayiku-Nartey.
Cookie Washington, the independent curator of the Annual African American Fiber Arts Exhibit, part of the North Charleston Arts Festival for the past 15 years, invited Eunice to debut her textile mosaics at Park Circle Gallery, dissolving a solo exhibit into a collaborative one.
Cookie and Eunice are creative kin, sisters. Though they live on different continents, their artistic journeys are tied with commonalities. Cookie and Eunice are both daughters of dress makers who encouraged them to obtain economic autonomy and joy through pursuit of their craft. Both sisters have been sewing since early childhood. Eunice launched Eunimak Fashion in 1991 and Cookie launched her bridal design and soft accessories business, Phenomenal Women Designs, in 1991. Both sisters embed their fiber art with spiritual, cultural, and historical transmissions.
Over the last two years, the Acres of Ancestry Initiative/Black Agrarian Fund has acquired numerous textile mosaics from Eunice who repurposes scrap fabrics into intricate textile mosaics. The natural world and Ghanaian culture are generative sources of inspiration for Eunice’s textile mosaics. The vibrant colors in woven kente cloth from the Ashanti and Volta regions of Ghana to the rhythmic traditional dances like ‘Adowa’ and ‘Agbadza’ are recent muses appearing in Eunice’s textile mosaics. In describing her artistic journey, Eunice shares “My art was created along my journey of life and my sincerest gratitude goes to my late Mom and Dad.”
Cookie Washington says, “I seek to make art that challenges people, art that makes your spirit soar, art to make you think and feel, or agitates and annoys, art that challenges you to learn more about the subject and to find your own feelings about it. I have a passionate urge to create art that is ‘way-showing’. I find that art quilting emits a spirit, a presence, an energy, a vitality unlike that of any other medium. Fiber art muralism, is an emerging art form, it is a fairly small part of the art world. I am excited to be part of the sisterhood that is bringing this craft/art to the Lowcountry.”
An Opening Reception (Covid restrictions permitting) will be held on September 10th from 5-7pm. At 6pm, Cookie and Eunice will have a Zoom conversation about their works and artistic processes.