"The beauty and power of the written word imparts a feeling of enchantment when wrapped around the body as adornment."
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My memory of first meeting Linda dates from a Saturday afternoon in 1975 not long after Julie: Artisans’ Gallery had opened its doors on Madison Avenue and become somewhat of a magnet for irreverent artists using textile techniques to create all manner of body adornment.
Saturdays were exceedingly busy and therefore NEVER allocated to reviewing “new work”. However when Linda approached me, some wise inner voice – to which I remain eternally grateful – said stop and focus. I did and found myself looking at a miraculous wool kimono assembled from multiple strips of loom knitted text, stacked sideways and crocheted together along parallel seams. With a tilt of my head I could read the words of a poem by ee cummings. Reverse the kimono and there was a vibrant graphic pattern of orange, white and black shapes.
With this first wearable piece Linda captured the full essence and spirit of Julie: Artisans’ Gallery as well as the mandate of the emerging Art to Wear Movement – to use the body as a vehicle to animate and display visual imagery.
Throughout forty years the paths travelled by Linda and myself have intertwined and our relationship, both personal and professional, has been symbiotic. Linda’s body of work has truly defined the face of Julie: Artisans’ Gallery… her creativity spilling forth over the years in an ever more complex and rich configuration of graphics, color and text.
I dare say, Linda’s world and mine, as well as the world at large would have been poorer and duller and certainly diminished had it not been for our shared journey – and our very special friendship.
Julie Schafler Dale
Julie: Artisans' Gallery NYC
The works on these pages are in private collections.