I employ the traditional techniques of Japanese shibori (a shape- and color-resist immersion dye process), a liquid and aleatory process from which subsequent compositional decisions derive. My work references the textures and colors of various kinds of seascapes and landscapes, including the internal and external terrain of the human body.
I am interested in the interplay between the ephemeral nature of life, the permanence of beauty, and the persistence of memory. These sculptures consider how the residue of the past retains: whether expressed through colors that are carefully created through resists or overdyeing, through multiple layers, or through the empty spaces that remain when objects are removed from the fabric. Hung to form various configurations of textured planes, this work responds to subtle air currents, often created by the movements of viewers.
The size of many of these pieces also helps them perform as sentinels for - or , perhaps, dancers of - memory: large, diaphanous beings with fluid edges, that function in relationship to what is both present and absent. By creating lines as well as openings, and by articulating positive and negative space, their edges frame information - or demarcate the lack of information - caught within, behind or beyond their edges.
This work is dedicated to the memory of my lost child, who saw the first permutations of this work just months before her death. Everything I make begins from the palimpsest of that deepest, primordial relationship.
A finalist for both the NICHE Award in Surface Design and the Dunay Prize for Fashion Accessories in 2006, and recipient of the Textile Society of America New Professional Award in 2010, artist Rebecca Cross exhibits her work nationally and internationally, including in shows juried by textile art luminaries Susan Shie, Nancy Crow, Cynthia Schira, Yoshiko Yamamoto Wada and Jason Pollen. Formally trained as a bel canto singer at the Oberlin Conservatory, in Oberlin, Ohio, where she now lives, she has performed contemporary art music in a range of venues. The worlds of music and literature continue to fascinate and inform her visual art.
Cross has collaborated extensively with the Double Edge Dance Company, Kora Radella and Ross Feller, artistic directors, in Cleveland, New York City and Berlin, Germany. She received her MFA in Textiles from the Kent State University School of Art, where she now teaches Surface Design and Professional Practices; she was a Visiting Fellow teaching Art Criticism at Case Western Reserve University in 2009, and teaches 3D Design at Baldwin Wallace University in Berea, Ohio. Solo exhibitions include Untied in 19 Pieces at Praxis Fiber Workshop in Cleveland (2015), Skuggminne/Shadow Memory at Svavel Art Gallery in Jönköping, Sweden (2016); Like a River (2013) at The Cleveland Sculpture Center; and Absence/Presence (2012) at the Morgan Paper Conservatory. Group and invitational exhibits include The Art and Mechanisms of Healing, at the Allen Memorial Art Museum, Oberlin Ohio, (2016); Superlatives (2011) at the Zanesville Museum of Art in Zanesville, Ohio; Liaisons (2011) with painter Annette Poitau at the FAVA Gallery in Oberlin, Ohio (remounted at the Mansfield Museum of Art in Mansfield, Ohio, in 2014); and Correspondence (2010) with Clare Murray Adams at Summit Artspace, Akron, Ohio. October 2011. Between 2009-2016, Cross participated in artist residencies in Husqvarna, Sweden; Budapest, Hungary; at the Vermont Studio Center in Johnson, Vermont, and at Zygote Press and the Morgan Paper Conservatory, both in Cleveland. In 2009, Cross was an American representative in Paris, France, in the ENSAD exhibit, under the aegis of the World Shibori Network. Cross co-juried with Jan Driesbach the 2017 National Fiber exhibit at the Morgan Paper Conservatory; and co-juried the 2014 Form Not Function National Quilt Exhibition at the Carnegie Center for Art in New Albany, Indiana.
Cross's work appears in Ann Collier's Using Textile Arts and Handcrafts in Therapy With Women: Weaving Lives Back Together (Jessica Kingsley Publishers, 2011); 1000 Artisan Textiles (2010: Rockport Publishers/Quarry Books, Beverly, MA); and in American Craft Magazine (June-July, 2010).