THE FIBERS’ EXPRESSION
Invisible Threads, Evelyn Politzer’s solo exhibition at the Miami Dade College Hialeah Art Gallery, curated by Noor Blazekovic of Irreversible Projects.
Evelyn Politzer is a fiber artist originally from Uruguay, based in Miami. She works primarily with natural fibers, like wool and yarn from her native land, curiously known for being populated by more sheep than people. She favors fibers hand-dyed by her rural countrywomen. Handling those fibers from home makes her feel connected to her roots. Evelyn comes to her art practice with a background in Interior Design, a great affinity to color and sensibility for nature.
In this exhibition, we got to see an ample range of Evelyn's work. Coming to your encounter as you entered the space and occupying a large wall to the right was the installation 'Every Drop Counts.' This installation is composed of hand-knitted water drops on various tones of blue and green hanging from the ceiling, some short, some long, almost touching the floor, forming a penetrable installation. Walking through this gentle maze of oversized water drops reminded us of the importance of conserving water and nature in general. 'Our relationship with the natural environment is one of the recurrent themes of my work,' says Evelyn.
Then almost in front of the drops, if you veered from the entrance to the left, we encountered an installation of female breasts knitted in wool. They resemble women's breasts in multiple shapes and colors, almost as varied as in real life. Some are perky and attached to the wall; others are elongated and just hanging. This piece shines a light on diversity, the importance of awareness about breast health for women - Evelyn's mother passed away from breast cancer at a young age - and the need to accept our aging bodies lovingly.
Next, we find a reproduction of Evelyn's studio, an attempt to share with the public a view of the place where she warmly brings to life her creations. The scene is set with a large table over a homey rug, surrounded by her work implements: needles, books, and many types of fibers. In the back wall of this makeshift studio hangs a tryptic piece titled 'Invisible Walls.' These walls are composed of an array of many knitted and crocheted yarn bricks on multiple shades of red and pink, fixed on a fine mesh of copper wire. Evelyn has shown these walls before installed in the middle of a room, in such a way they let you walk through them, a metaphor on the hope for people being able to move freely across borders. This time, they provide a sense of place to the pretend studio.
Another piece in the space resembles a wall: a mattress, standing vertically, covered on canvas, and knitted bricks attached. 'Ray of Light' is the title of this piece, referring to the walls we build to keep us apart. Instead, this wall is soft, its bricks in multiple shades of green to signal hope.
In the middle of the room, hugging a column, there are Evelyn's nests. Which is a better metaphor for home, for a safe place, than a nest? Evelyn Politzer weaves all the tenderness and coziness anyone could ever wish from home in her nest series. They are multiform, made of wool, combined with little tree vines. Each one embodies all the qualities that a good home provides: a unique place that embraces without trapping, without constraining.
Finally, we found Evelyn's most recent work at the back of the room. She has been exploring drawing with fibers and introducing the recourse of abstraction, which is somewhat new to her work. 'Free Spirit' consists of three panels, with irregular shapes of multicolor, hand-dyed yarn applied onto linen canvas. These pieces are so colorful that one can feel one's mood lift at their sight. Of this new adventure, Evelyn says, '… very few colors were left out of these abstract explorations on purpose, trying to show the viewers the openness of the color scheme as a sign of freedom and liberation in the art-making process.'
At this point, the invisible thread mentioned in the exhibition's title is very apparent; in fact, it is joy! The artist's joy of freely exploring color and texture and of expressing herself through these materials.