*Featured photo: Shot of the “Mutations” exhibition in November 2020 ©Eva Taieb
ICI l’interview en français
Translation by Chiara Cordoni
Eva Taieb founded The Fibery in Paris, a contemporary art gallery in the French capital dedicated to the textile medium and to Fiber Art. She has recently chosen a new formula to propose her works, transforming permanence into nomadism, thus shifting from place to project, a more fluid way of giving greater visibility to the works and artists with whom she collaborates and of reaching a wider public. ArteMorbida interviewed her to discover the behind-the-scenes story of the gallery and her vision of the future.
Adeline Contreras “Nids” 2015, (linen, horsehair, ceramics) 20x11x7 cm ©Adeline Contreras
Eva, you founded a gallery specialized in Fiber Art in Paris: a happy intuition given the moment of great success of this language of contemporary art. How and why was The Fibery born?
After 25 years in the fashion world, and an impetus given by a year dedicated to an art market Master Degree, it seemed obvious to me that there was something to value in relation to my knowledge, my sensitivity and my aspirations. It was a question of creating a clearly identified space for textile artists who had difficulties in finding their place in those distribution channels intended for crafts.
By creating a gallery specializing in the highlighting of textile fibers, know-how and textile imagery, I am taking on a specificity that brings a different reading to contemporary art. I accompany textile artists but also more generally visual artists who integrate and experiment with this prism in their work. I am particularly interested in revealing the evocative force of the textile material in the work and the singularity it adds to it.
Annita Romano, Eva Taieb, Frédérique Gourdon ©Eva Taieb
Yours has lately become a nomadic gallery: can you explain what it means and what are the differences compared to a traditional gallery?
The choice to become a nomadic gallery was precipitated by financial imperatives linked to the health situation. Nevertheless, this choice proved to be fruitful for the development of the gallery. The budget allocated to the permanent space allowed me to participate in fairs, to choose larger exhibition spaces where I could present large formats and installations. I can now choose “tailor-made” venues for my exhibitions; it is a great freedom to be able to calibrate the period and duration but also to choose the size, the architecture and different locations in order to meet a new public. Finally, it has allowed me to have time between shows to work on collaborations, especially with hotels in the capital.
Annita Romano, Work in progress 2021 (silk, gold thread and dyed cotton) 15x30cm ©Annita Romano
The Fibery features international, emerging and established artists. What are the selection criteria?
I like to confront the creations of the new generation with those of the artists of the 70’s and 80’s (the great era of the Lausanne biennials) such as Françoise Giannesini or Pierre Vallauri who took part in the great revival of contemporary tapestry and the advent of Fiber Art in France.
I don’t choose artists but rather works that challenge my sensibility and/or my thoughts and that I can therefore defend with conviction. The idea is to present the artistic line of the gallery in a diversity of mediums and formats revolving around the textile and/or its know-how.
Christine Mathieu “Coiffe normande”, 2017 digital inkjet print with microencapsulated pigments espon ultra chrome K3 – work presented on the occasion of the exhibition “Déconfilement” giugno 2021©Christine Mathieu
In your experience, how is Fiber Art positioned currently in the context of the contemporary art market and what is the response from the public?
Textile art has regained popularity in the art market over the last ten years. This impulse is undoubtedly related to the production of outstanding institutional exhibitions dedicated to this medium, but also to the craze on the art market for artists from the African continent who frequently use textiles as the raw material for their creations. More generally, the public’s sensitivity is explained by the fact that textiles crystallize many themes that are at the heart of our modern societies, such as the evolution of the woman’s place in our modern societies, but also ecological and environmental concerns. It is without doubt the medium that offers the most accessible and universal reading.
Clarence Guéna,”Sans Titre 20A03″, 2020 Mottled canvas, resin, hand engraving on wood 62 x 49 cm (zoom) ©Clarence Guéna
What do you think are the most interesting aspects of Fiber Art?
During my exhibitions the real interest and pleasure of the visitors in discovering the plurality and richness that the use of this medium brings to the work of art is evident. For those who are used to gallery exhibitions, it is like a breath of fresh air in their journey usually paved by paintings, drawings and sculptures made of the so-called “classical” materials. They discover painting, drawing and sculpture in a different way.
Françoise Giannesini “Comme des pans de siècle en voyage”, 1984 (wool, cotton, linen, altuglas, wood) 200x130x40cm ©Françoise Giannesini
I ask you for three pieces of advice: one for collectors who want to buy Fiber Art works, one for those who are now approaching this kind of artworks, and one for young fiber artists.
Today there are many media and specialized digital platforms that allow you to be introduced easily to the textile art scene. The next step is, as with any art, to get close to artworks and, in my opinion, let yourself be carried away by your emotions, whether or not you are an informed collector. As far as young artists are concerned, I would advise them to communicate, to get closer to their more experienced peers, to confront textiles with other mediums in their work, to apply for calls for projects, to do residencies, to join artists’ associations!
Isabelle Bisson Mauduit « Bandée » 2020 – 26×19,5×5,5cm (hand and machine embroidery in box) ) ©Isabelle Bisson Mauduit
The Fibery is a very dynamic gallery: what should we expect in the near future?
The Fibery is a very young gallery that has achieved great popularity, especially among artists who work with textiles, as it is the only one that specializes in showcasing this medium.
The aim now is to establish this reputation with institutions in order to multiply collaborations but also to expand our network of collectors to enable the gallery to be financially viable and thus to continue to develop. In particular, I would like to present the work of talented artists from Latin America, Africa or Asia, which is not possible at the moment because it requires heavy and costly logistics that we are not able to support at the moment.