Entertainment, Reviews

White Water Gallery Exhibits Brehm’s Fiber Sculpture

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photo by Nancy Nottermann Lian Brehm, paper maker and sculptor is on exhibit at White Water Gallery through July 14.

EAST HARDWICK – Hosted at James Teuscher’s White Water Gallery on Main Street in East Hardwick, the exhibit of Lian Brehm’s work includes a display of her unique and colorful sculptures that resemble the flowering cacti of Mexico. Brehm uses a process that she developed, her own hand-made paper and kami-ito, a twisted paper cord from Japan when casting her sculptures and wall hangings. The exhibit is open from 11a.m. to 3 p.m., for two more Sundays, July 7 and July 14.

Currently a Vermont resident and previously an art teacher in Danville, Brehm grew up on Long Island, the daughter of artistic parents. Her dad was a jeweler and public school teacher and her mom a fiber artist.

Eleven years ago, after her mother passed away, Brehm says that she “started making spirit boats in honor of my Mom and wanted to learn about the native peoples of Mexico and how they made their intense red dyes.” Today, Brehm enjoys a winter residency in San Miguel de Allende, northwest of Mexico City. The architecture, murals, mosaics, colors and connections with other artists in this UNESCO world heritage site have inspired her work.

photo by Nancy Nottermann Brehm’s signature work, Desert Sea 2023 is a paper sculpture on canvas in a background.

Brehm uses a variety of fibers to make paper pulp including linen/flax, kozo from the Mulberry tree and a fiber called abaca made from a banana leaf from southeast Asia. She casts her work using pumpkins, lotus pod bottoms and other natural materials. Most important to her work is the quality of the dyes. To visit this exhibition is to be “gleefully immersed in color” according Brehm and this reviewer certainly agrees.

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