INSPIRATIONAL ARTIST

Taiana Giefer

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About Taiana

As a felter, my mission is to create timeless, versatile pieces of art by bringing ancient felting techniques to the modern textiles world. Each piece is unique and 100% handmade by me. I began experimenting with handmade fabrics in 2007 while visiting family in Germany. What started as simple artistic curiosity quickly grew into a passionate and inspired desire to create with and share the ancient felting process. Collaborating with Calvin Klein’s head designer Francisco Costa, I created a number of custom felted fabrics for CK’s 2009 fall RTW runway show. Since then I have worked on my own collections of scarves and blankets, selling to stores world wide. I have also collaborated with a number of other designers, including Helmut Lang, Maiyet and Rick Owen, creating fabrics to be used in their collections. After almost a decade of making textiles for the fashion industry, I longed to bring my craft into the eyes of the art world and home interiors realm.

5 years in the making, The Seed Study’s “Conception” collection of wall hangings features hand + needle felted wool tapestries both small and large. The inspiration for these pieces comes from our incredible Mother Earth, its old growth and the new, the merging of diverse flora as unconventional botanical friendships develop. I love observing the unpredictability of growth throughout the plant kingdom, seeing maters mix, intentionally and coincidentally. My intentions for these pieces are to bring warmth, playfulness, familiarity and tactility into one’s space. Bringing happenstance from the outside in!

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Sumerian Legend claims that Urnamman, a Sumerian war hero of Lagesh, first discovered wet felting techniques. Following this traditional path to create the scarves and blankets as well as the bases for the tapestries, I layer and sculpt merino wool and other natural wool fibers together over a span of hours or days, depending on the desired design’s intricacy. Once the intended weave is complete, I pour a mixture of boiling water and olive oil soap onto the fiber. Using a series of labor-intensive agitation techniques, I then apply pressure and create friction to naturally bind the fibers together. When repeated over and over this alchemical process causes the wool fibers, which are naturally kinked and full of scales, to lock together into a fabric known as felt.

Creating the texture of the tapestries involves a combination of needle felting and raw wool sculpting, essentially a continuation of layering. Due to the organic process that the fiber undergoes during fabrication, no two of my creations will look exactly alike. I source my fibers from Ashland Oregon, Yorkshire, the Falkland Islands, and Australia, to name a few places. I only use wool from sheep that are raised humanely. The dye houses used by my farms use low impact dye methods when dying, although a bulk of my tapestries are made with un-dyed fibers. Please contact me for further information.

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