Encounters: Vadis Turner

By November 28, 2022
Vadis Turner, Primrose Path Engulfed in Smoke, 2011; ribbon, clothing, antique textiles, and mixed media. 68 by 63 by 5 inches. Courtesy the artist and the Huntsville Museum of Art.
Vadis Turner, Copper Window, 2021, mineral wool, resin, copper and acrylic, 27 by 24 by 5 inches. Courtesy the artist and the Huntsville Museum of Art.
Horst P. Horst: Essence of the times on view at SCAD FASH in Atlanta through April 16
ADVERTISEMENT
Vadis Turner, Messy Vessel, The Crazy Lady, 2021; burnt wood, leather, ribbon, resin, hardware, 29 by 32 by 16 in. Photo by Hannah Deits. Courtesy the artist and the Huntsville Museum of Art.

Nashville artist Vadis Turner transforms domestic materials into new forms, both reviving and reinventing a function for handmade objects in a society with progressively fewer hands-on activities. The artist manipulates textiles and other elements, allowing them to transcend their intended functions, contradict their structural natures, and transcend their traditional gender association. Resisting categorization,Turner’s engaging works occupy a zone between textile art, painting, craft and sculpture.

After receiving her BFA and MFA from Boston University, Turner became fascinated by the possibilities presented by traditional handicraft materials to define and contradict conventional gender roles. Her mixed-media work began with a debutante gown made out of wax paper from her mother’s kitchen. She continues to create works that transcend the commonplace from its intended function into a vehicle for social commentary.The artist observes, “Transforming domestic materials into contemporary art objects bonds me with ancestral forms of craft that determine a woman’s value, sexual worth and cultural identity. My time—like generations of women before me—is judged by what I make with my hands.”

from the exhibition text

Vadis Turner, Rose Window, 2021; curtains, bedding, ribbon, steel, thread, resin, acrylic paint and mixed media, 84 by 80 by 18 inches. Courtesy the artist and the Huntsville Museum of Art.
Vadis Turner, Red Gate, 2018, braided bedsheets, due, acrylic, resin, wood, mixed media, 118 by 120 by 10 inches. Photo by Wes Megyar. Courtesy the artist and the Huntsville Museum of Art.

Vadis Turners: Encounters was on view at the Huntsville Museum of Art in Alabama through November 27, 2022. Stay tuned for a feature reviewing the HSV exhibition in January 2023.

Related Stories

a thread, unread

Mood Ring
Through video, gifs, and cinemagraphs, West Virginia artist Ally Christmas meditates on the loss of her grandmother, examining text messages and altering textiles and family photos.