In November of 2016 I was one of a group of 22 wonderfully diverse artists selected nationwide to attend the James Webb Space Telescope Artist Event at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md.
I had the opportunity to meet and interact with engineers, technicians and other team members from NASA's James Webb Space Telescope, the world’s next-generation space observatory, tour Goddard's Integration & Test facility, see the world's largest clean room facility, and see the James Webb Space Telescope itself. I had time to sit in front of the mirror and create, which I spent hand stitching silk hexagons for my representation of the mirror. Back in the studio, I worked on creating a large art quilt, and documented the visit and the process on my blog: http://suereno.blogspot.com/search/label/James%20Webb%20Space%20Telescope
The artwork will be on display at the NASA Goddard Visitor Center this spring.
Here's my official statement for this piece:
Hexagons are a perennial motif in quilts. I began stitching the silk hexagons representing the mirror of the James Webb Space Telescope on site at NASA Goddard. Cyanotype dates from the 1840s as a pioneering photography process; these and the colored dye prints were developed outdoors using UV rays from the sun. The border image is from the other end of the photo technology spectrum, taken with a fisheye lens on an iPhone and digitally printed. The needle felted center panel is made with minimally processed wool and silk fibers and modern mylar strands. It is my depiction of the early luminosity, going back 13.5 billion years, which the telescope will be able to detect.
Hand-stitched silk hexagons, needlefelting with wool, silk, and mylar, hand beadwork with semi-precious stones, cyanotypes and solar dye prints on cotton, digital prints on cotton, silk and cotton patchwork, stitching.
Size: 60"h x 74"w
- NASA Goddard Visitor Center, dates TBA