Chrystine Dawn Davison
About the Exhibit
Blackfeet Portraits is a traveling exhibition of 15-25 large scale portraits created by Cheryl Dineen Ferrin. Portraits are between 4 and 8 feet in height. These art quilt portraits are of living artists from the Blackfeet Nation and will be displayed with two pieces of each of portrayed artists’ art works, creating a traveling exhibit of approximately 45 art works.
Cheryl Dineen Ferrin, 2010-2011 Friends of the Museum of the Plains Indian Visiting Artist and Curator, Mattawan, Michigan
Ti Shalene Stalnaker, Co-Curator, East Glacier
Ruthann Knudson, Executive Director, Friends of the Museum of the Plains Indian, Great Falls
Portrayed Artists – Dwight Billedeaux, Ronan; Dawn Chrystine Davison, New Castle, Washington; David Dragonfly, Browning; Leonda Fast Buffalo Horse, Browning; Mari King, East Glacier Park; Jay Polite Laber, St. Ignatius; Valentina LaPier, East Glacier; Deborah Magee, Cut Bank; Darrell Norman, Browning; Lyle Omeasoo, Browning; John I. Pepion, Valier; Leon A. Rattler, Billings; Francis Wall, Helena
Cheryl Dineen Ferrin - Artist Statement
I find few other subjects as fascinating as the individual. Personal identity is a central theme in my work. My quilted fabric portrayals draw on the complex interaction between subject and artist to capture the individual’s spirit. In the creative process, I strive to integrate prevailing attitudes on beauty, politics and self-image. Through the poignant interplay of gesture, vivid color, pattern, and a touch of voyeurism, I attempt to define the enigmatic in my subjects. I want to represent a perception of truth, the moment that will tell something of the subject, the viewer and the artist.
I place the subjects very close to the foreground, forcing a direct interaction with the viewer. When necessary, I utilize the traditional quilt technique of assembling multiple images of the subject to temper this confrontational sense with a meditative mood.
The non-traditional use of the quilt as a portrait canvas opens another circuit for the interpretation of the individual. I primarily rely on hand-dyed silks and cottons and commercially-dyed cotton fabrics to construct the art works. I love the drape and feel of fabric. The subtle variations in fabric color that are inherent in the hand-dyed process are equally as intriguing to me as a boldly printed commercial design. Each can be used to create the appropriate statement in the portrait. Even the most humble cottons can become incredibly expressive by varying how they’re handled in the designs.
Cheryl Dineen Ferrin creates large-format portraits with a vibrant palette of silk and cotton fabrics. The resulting “Pop” nature of this combination has inspired people to describe her work as “Andy Warhol-Meets-Quilting-Bee.” She melds her childhood needle arts experience with a high-tech background and her love of the figure, to create striking and sensitive portraits.
Since studying batik in Singapore and exploring other forms of surface design, Cheryl designs the majority of fabrics she uses in her artwork. Her ability and flair for creating digitally-developed and printed designs has further expanded her opportunity to make truly unique portrait art quilts.
Cheryl has settled in southwestern Michigan where she maintains a quiet, contemplative home. Her rural setting and its relatively close proximity to urban areas such as Chicago and Detroit, allows her the right social balance to feed her creative muse. She has a degree in Art and Economics from a small, liberal arts college. Prior to working full-time in her studio, she worked in business financial analysis, marketing and public relations, and journalism.
Flathead Quilters Guild
Plum Creek Foundation