Ruth Tabancay

 

This body of work started with cups of tea that I drank with my daughter as we snuggled in a comforter while doing her geometry homework. The accumulation of dried tea bags left on the window sill were the beginnings of my first piece. As the work evolved, I became fascinated with the symmetry of round tea bags laid out in a hexagon grid and I added color as another dimension. For all these pieces, tea bags were hand-stitched to a muslin backing, layered with batting and muslin backing, then all layers tied together. Garden Variations was selected for “Fiberart International 2010” in Pittsburg, PA. The show travels in 2011 to Memorial Art Gallery in Rochester, NY, in April, then to the Museum of Craft and Design in San Francisco in October. Extending the Useful Life will be exhibited at “Materials: Hard & Soft” at the Center for Visual Arts in Denton, TX, in February and at “Green: the Color and the Cause” at The Textile Museum in Washington, D.C., in April.

 

Photography by Scott Braley

 

"Extending the Useful Life" (2010)

Hand-stitched. Tea bags, embroidery floss, muslin, batting.
(33” X 26” X 65")

 

 

"Extending the Useful Life (detail)" (2010)

Hand-stitched. Tea bags, embroidery floss, muslin, batting.
(33” X 26” X 65")

 

 

"Garden Variations" (2009)

Tea bags, acrylic paint, embroidery floss, muslin, batting
(49” X 65” X 1”)

 

 

"Garden Variations (detail)" (2009)

Tea bags, acrylic paint, embroidery floss, muslin, batting
(49" x 65" x 1")

 

 

 

 

"Grandmother's Flower Garden" (2008)

Tea bags, acrylic paint, embroidery floss, muslin, batting
(36" x 48" x 1")

 

 

"Grandmother's Flower Garden (detail)" (2008)

Tea bags, acrylic paint, embroidery floss, muslin, batting
(36" x 48" x 1")

 

 

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Ruth Tabancay received her BA in 1973 from University of California, Berkeley; her MD in 1979 from University of California School of Medicine, San Francisco; and her BFA in 2001 from California College of Arts and Crafts, Oakland. Her work was chosen for “Fiberart International 2010” at the Pittsburgh Center for the Arts in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; for “Green: the Color and the Cause” at The Textile Museum in Washington, D. C. (in 2011); and “Materials: Hard & Soft” at the Center for Visual Arts in Denton, Texas (in 2011). Her numerous group exhibitions in the San Francisco Bay Area include “By the Hand” at the Bedford Gallery in Walnut Creek, “SmartArt Trash into Treasure” at Lincart Gallery in San Francisco, and the current Civic Art Exhibition at Berkeley City Hall. Her work is in the public collection of the Oakland Museum of California. She lives and works in Berkeley.

 

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