Sunday, October 23, 2011

Taos Pueblo Artists.....

Patricia Michaels - Fashion and Surface Design

Hand knit silk yarn and silk backless dress with natural pearl strap, inspired by buckskin dresses and the texture of the hide before and after the tanning process.    

 The works of Native American Designer Patricia Michaels uses textures that challenge modern convention and forms that differ from standard cut out patterns. She incorporates a unique vision into each of her garments. The marriage of history and this contemporary time is present in her work.

"I trust in a garment made of fine materials to help make it pleasing to a person that is, if you're a person of great desires. Not to be inhibited is a powerful quality that allows clarity to flow through one's heart and eyes, making for pleasurable honest impressions," Michaels said.

Her roots are in the Taos Pueblo, a location renowned as an epicenter of trade. Michaels follows in her ancestors' footsteps within the global community. She apprenticed with designers at the Santa Fe Opera in 1986, attended the Institute of American Indian Arts, and formally studied fashion, art and textiles at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, learning fundamentals of traditional clothing and textile design at the Field Museum's Department of Anthropology.

In 1997 and1998, Michaels directed and participated in the Southwest Association of Indian Arts contemporary fashion show, bringing two of the most talked about runway shows in the organization's history to clothing connoisseurs and spectators alike. She has also hosted shows in Geneva, Switzerland, Las Angeles and New York.

Most recently she lived in Venezia, Italia for 2 1/2 years. She participated in the Venice Bienalle and worked with an Italian Taylor. As she traveled through Italia, she was constantly inspired by the great craftsmanship and design. The timeless villas and cathedrals gave inspiration for eternity and future designs.

She is a designer who despises the thought of being another Native American Artist who will be exploited. She has high standards and trust that her ideas will strike interest with a designer and or financier who will give her support and bring the world to discover her valuable resources within. This is a deliberate act of creation to escape the stereotypes of Native American Design. Patricia loves to design and feels her ideas are strong and derived from her experiences through education, travel, work and cultural participation.

Velvet jeans inspired by colors of abalone shell used by Natives for adornment with a de-construction western vest.

As a child, I searched for fabric with Native girls and flowers. Now that I design my own material, this evening dress has wild flowers with Native girls. The black velvet covering the heart is significant of the black untold history of the Native American Indian.
Jennifer Esperanza

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