Stacy Speyer

Artist, Studio Manager of Textiles Department, Weaving Teacher
California College of the Arts
Alameda, California, USA

My creative passions shift between a hunger for knowledge and a constant drive to make. Regardless of the medium, I am drawn to bright but simple aesthetics. My light airy structures use a minimal amount of material to express a woven plane in space or a regular geometric configuration on a sphere. I seek a balance of movement and stillness, between the expansion of infinity and the quiet emptiness of the void. Every piece exists as both a whole unit and a multiplicity of smaller elements interlaced in an emergent phenomena.

The work entered here combines geometric forms with textile processes, materials, and sensibilities. Like most mathematical research, they grew out of a series of 'what if' questions.

Tetrahedra Twist: Five Shades of Blues
Tetrahedra Twist: Five Shades of Blues
45 x 35 x 53 cm
laser cut acrylic, hand dyed cotton thread & stainless steel fasteners

Joining tetrahedra in this manner gives a playful twist into the regularity of the geometry. The additional shift of the thread wound inside pushes it further. I am just beginning to explore the variables possible with these units, both mathematically and artistically. Though the change in colour is subtle, the thread of each unit was dyed a different colour and connects to the dyed and woven pieces of my other artwork. These pieces show off the beauty of thread as lines held in a decreasing/increasing space overlapping in different ways as you move around the piece.

Woven Geodesics: Set of Three Frequencies
Woven Geodesics: Set of Three Frequencies
35 x 35 x 35 cm
reed in natural colour & dyed

Similar to geodesic polyhedra, the lines that create these shapes are great circles. This set shows one type of structure in 3 frequencies. The smallest form, in purple, has the lines of an icosidodecahedron. The blue one is the next in size and frequency. I describe its shape as an 'expanded truncated icosahedron' with triangles in between the pentagons and hexagons. The biggest shape that contains the other two, in the natural colour of the reed, is right in between a sphere and an icosahedron. This structure can be made closer to an icosahedron with more accentuated points. The nature of the reed makes it difficult to attain true geometric regularity, so I choose to enjoy the unique organic quality of these forms.

Woven Duals: Charcoal Icosidodecahedron & Green Rhombic Triacontahedron
Woven Duals: Charcoal Icosidodecahedron & Green Rhombic Triacontahedron
11 x 11 x 11 cm
glued laser cut paper

Whenever the materials allow, I can't resist making a beautiful proof of duality. I see this small piece as a thin shell containing air and describing icosahedral symmetry. This particular piece comes from a set of forms I used in a book I've just finished, called 'Polyhedra: Eye Candy to Feed the Mind.' The back and front of such forms, made of edges and vertices, can line up to create regular geometric patterns. Yet, from a different angle, they are a dynamic chaos of lines.