"What’s a Girl to Do? – less is less,"
Virginia Stephen "What’s a Girl to Do? – less is less," 2011, wet felted, corriedale roving, mohair & found buttons, Dia 23cm x H 7.5cm
What’s a Girl to Do?
Felted hats by Edmonton artist Virginia Stephen
February 18 – March 24, 2012
Exhibition Reception: Saturday, February 18 from 2-4 pm
Fibre artist, Virginia Stephen, explores a variety of life issues she faces through hand felted hats in her exhibition What’s a Girl to Do. The inspiration for Virginia’s exhibition began with a felted hat, “What’s a Girl to Do?? - Less is Less” created for the 2011 Alberta Craft Council In the Red group exhibition commenting on the effects of cut backs in government on arts organizations and artists. Virginia’s exhibition of hand felted hats, designed not to be worn on the head but to explore many of those life issues that affect the headspace of this artist. It is, in a way, a memoir of recent circumstances, explored with drama and humour and by pushing the structural potential of felt as a sculptural medium. Individual themes include issues of balance, work stress, keeping the magic, dealing with weather, keeping up appearances, and the relationships between ‘less’ and ‘more’. Underlying the work is the notion that it is ‘ok’ to laugh at ourselves and our circumstances, and it is also ‘ok’ to laugh in a gallery, with or at the art.
Virginia Stephen holds an MA in Visual and Performing Arts Education and undergraduate degrees in both art history and arts education. Currently Executive Director of Liberal Studies, Faculty of Extension at the University of Alberta, Virginia brings to her practice over 25 years of experience as a painter, arts and museum educator, senior arts administrator and consultant.