Carol Eckert coiling art
Carol Eckert coiling art – fiber sculptures of animals that are mythology symbols: snakes as symbols of evil, storks or cranes as signs of good fortune. Animal symbolism appeals to her, through the coiled fiber process she creates stories, legends of great floods, tales of quests and journeys, parables of good and evil. “Mythology and art have been intertwined for as long as there have been humans on earth, and my work often makes references to art history”, says Carol Eckert.
Carol Eckert was born in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. As a child, she experimented with many textile processes – embroidery, quilting, sewing, resist dying, knotting. At the university she studied painting and drawing, after receiving her degree, she returned to textile art. She was most inspired by the works of textile artists, whose names have been lost to history. Works she admires include Japanese screens, traditional Jewish paper-cuts, and Medieval bestiaries.
Her artwork is anything but traditional. Carol Eckert uses embroidery floss wrapped around electronic hookup wire mainly, and the detail is just exquisite.
From the story of Adam and Eve to the tale of Rappaccini’s Daughter, humankind’s complex relationship with the natural world has been recorded in myths and legends, many warning of the dangers lurking beneath nature’s beauty. The technique she uses to create art pieces is as old as the stories they tell. Coiling is an ancient technique, intertwined with humans’ enduring connection to nature — its earliest known use was the construction of vessels from gathered plant materials.
“Birds and predators figure prominently in my work. Birds have been a source of mystery to humans for centuries. Complex symbols that often mirror our own beliefs, they continue to be seen as augurs – a bird in the house brings bad luck, a stork is a sign of good fortune, the albatross is an omen of bad weather. Wolves have loomed large in my imagination since I was a small girl, haunted by the tale of Peter and the Wolf. They appear regularly in my pieces, drawn from sources as diverse as the environmental writings of Barry Lopez and Teutonic legends predicting the end of the world”.