As she approached the age of 60, Half Moon Bay resident Doreen Maller resolved to embrace her creativity.
“I allowed myself to consider myself an artist,” said Maller. “And I allowed myself to dedicate some portion of time every day to creating art. It was a high mountain for me to climb to give myself that permission.”
Some five years later, Maller has just won first prize in a juried show called “Textiles,” curated by Half Moon Bay resident Laura McHugh. Maller’s circular artwork “Moon” is about 3 feet wide and combines knotted and woven elements to achieve a complex texture. “Moon” incorporates new fibers, repurposed remnants, kitchen string, recycled sari silk and shells.
“I collected the shells from the beach right here in Half Moon Bay,” said Maller. She added that she used the small holes that were already in the shells to actually weave them in with the other materials.
Maller started making “Moon” in the months leading up to her son’s wedding last year, which had a “harvest moon” theme. When storms hit the coast in early January, she added two long, streaming pieces on each side.
“Those drapes that come out of it were kind of inspired by the streams that were breaching and coming down from the mountains into the ocean,” said Maller. “But somebody said — and I kind of believe it too — there’s a hopefulness to it.”
McHugh said viewers find the overall show, which also includes some of her work along with textile art by Coastsiders Diane Costello and Carol Enos, artistically refreshing.
“People get used to a certain kind of art,” she said. “And then you present something that breaks outside of that and it is really nice to see something different.”
“Textiles” will be on display through April 21 in the Caldwell Gallery, located at 400 County Center in Redwood City.
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