Miki Lovett has been working in fabric and fiber for over 50 years in one way or another. As a youngster Miki sewed almost all the clothes she wore and became interested in knitting, embroidery and other decorative needle arts.
Miki began weaving in 1976 while working on her Masters of Fine Arts at Boston University. Miki’s weaving developed from utilitarian pieces to artwork including warp painting. In 2008 she tore her rotator cuff and had surgery. She recovered almost all her mobility but the strength and stamina of the right arm is limited. Miki finally had to concede that her weaving days are over. But not her creative days!
Miki Lovett began marbling in 2000 but had the opportunity to study with Elin Noble in 2007. This experience set her off in quest of color on paper as well as textiles. As with the dye work in her weaving, it is the combination of controlling the process and responding to the surprises in the process that Miki enjoys.
For Miki, marbling is a conversation between order and chaos, control and spontaneity. Order is not imposed on chaos nor is control meant to suppress spontaneity. There is a conversation between the ‘given’, the way the color moves and expands on the size, and ‘manipulation’ of the color with the tools. It is never the same twice.
More recently she has studied Historic Reproduction Marbling with Dan St. John using techniques and recipes from the 18th & 19th Centuries. Using paints and additives made in the studio, these papers are used by bookbinders and restoration craftspeople along with many other paper arts.
Miki use the traditional patterns, dating from the 12th century up to the present, as a base for studying the linear possibilities and for color studies. These patterns form a base from which more spontaneous designs can emerge.
Solar Plate Printmaking
For many years Miki has been intrigued with print making but has never had the opportunity to pursue the study as the equipment is costly and print making involves toxic chemicals that she could not use at her in-home studio.
The Artists Association of Nantucket set up a ‘green’ print making studio when they opened their Visual Arts Center in 2015 making the equipment available to member artists and promoting the use of Solar Plate.
Solar plate is a light-sensitized steel-backed polymer material used as an alternative to hazardous printing techniques. It is a safe approach to etching and relief printing. Dan Welden, a master print maker, has always had a love of experimentation and an interest in making printmaking more user-friendly. In the early 1970s his investigations into safer and healthier methods led to the development of the technique now widely known as Solar plate printing. Solar plate printing or etching not only uses art supplies that are less toxic than those used in traditional printing methods, but are also more versatile.
Miki was happy to take advantage of the new print studio at the AAN to work in Solar Printmaking as well as other print arts. In addition, Dan Welden was an Artist in Residence at the AAN just as the print studio was getting underway. Miki served as his studio assistant during his residency.
Miki am particularly intrigued with the depth one can achieve in etching and the many techniques available to enhance the etching. There is much to explore and excite in this journey!
A new outgrowth of Miki’s printing journey is working in monoprint which she studied while doing a residency at the Woodstock School of Art in Woodstock, NY. Miki is still experimenting with the endless possibilities of this genre and will be posting images as she works with it.
Mixed Media Award, Artists Association of Nantucket – 2015
Boston Weavers’ Guild Award of Merit – 1987
New England Weavers’ Seminar Award – 1985
‘Nantucket Island Living’, Winter 2009
‘Nantucket Independent’, Sept. 3, 2008
‘Cape Cod Life’ Arts Guide, Spring2008
The Weavers’ Journal
Cultural Center of Cape Cod
Artists Association of Nantucket, 19 Washington Street – 2001 to Present
Hotpoint Emporium, 39 Church Street, Bristol RI, 2017 – 2019
Arts Council of Nantucket Arts Festival Exhibit 2005 to 2018
Parchment Stationery, 11 Washington Street, Nantucket
Nantucket Bookworks, 25 Broad Street, Nantucket
Nantucket Looms, Main Street, Nantucket
Old Town Artisans Gallery, Tucson Arizona
The Pink Adobe Gallery, Tucson, Arizona
The Artisans’ Tree in Scituate, Massachusetts
Artists Association of Nantucket
Cultural Art Center of Cape Cod
Most of my pieces can be purchased through my Etsy Shop.