Polly Barton


About the Artist

Polly Barton is a nationally recognized artist who has been working in fiber for over thirty years. She is known for adapting the ancient weaving technique of ikat tying and dyeing into contemporary woven imagery. Her most recent work is a series of drawings with thread, called the Pollen Velvets. This vibrant 2-D work premired at Chiaroscuro in July 2018. Seduced by the surface of lush, matt pastel on paper, stitched with metallic thread, she is exploring embroidery, another ancient textile art.

"Pollen Velvets" Artist Statement:

I trace the edges of tradition and technique.

This new work of pigment rubbed into paper and stitched with metallic thread grew out of the memory as a young girl of working in needlepoint alongside my great-aunt while she watched the Watergate proceedings on television.

Needlepoint requires a grid, yet these color fields became the perfect surface for a free-hand adaptation of my drawings. Intricate, intimate, these threaded drawings devour time while the thread carries memory. 5 July 2018

As a young artist, Polly Barton points to her formative job as the personal assistant to Helen Frankenthaler, from whom she observed the inner drive, resilience, and intention necessary for an artist. The year was an introduction to the challenges and rewards of the New York art world.

In 1981, she moved to Kameoka, Japan and lived in the religious heart of the Oomoto Foundation to study with master weaver, Tomohiko Inoue. She practiced tea ceremony, calligraphy and Noh Drama with Oomoto’s master teachers.

Barton continues to weave and shows her woven ikats on both coasts. Her work is in many collections including the Art Institute of Chicago, Museum of
Fine Arts, Boston, The Community Hospital Foundation of Monte Rey, the Longhouse Reserve in New York. Her work has been published in numerous
magazines including Hali Magazine, FiberArts, Surface Design Journal and American Craft. She is a member of the Textile Society of America, the Surface
Design Association, the Textile Study Group of New York, and the Espanola Valley Fiber Arts Association. She enjoys lecturing and teaching workshops to weaving guilds and conferences around the country.
Mindstream Bliss
Mind Stream Unfurled
Ocean Mist I
Ocean Mist II
Spring Breeze (green)
Red (red)