My Old English Sheepdog, Willi, and I are park rangers for the open space where I first discovered akebia vines. After tripping over this tough vine, I found out how invasive it was. Although I can’t make a dent in its growth habit, it’s good to know that I can collect it without disrupting the local ecology. The vines vary in diameter throughout the year and they dry in different colors, so collecting them during our daily walks adds to the fun.
Fiber/Decorative, Other (Wild akebia vines, rattan and encaustic medium)
5.75 x 5.75 x 4 inches
About the artist
Lonning’s interest in patterns and complex weaving techniques began in college where she minored in textiles and majored in ceramics. Although many of her vessel forms still reflect her love of ceramics, she chose basketry as the natural union of two passions. She works with rattan because of its uniformity and ease in accepting dyes, and with a locally collected, invasive vine called akebia. Her interest in architecture and gardening, with all of the color variations and textures, are major sources of inspiration. Lonning’s work is in numerous public and private collections including the White House Craft Collection, the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian Institution, the Mint Museum in Charlotte, NC and the US Embassy in Bangkok, Thailand. In 2000 Lonning authored the book, “The Art of Basketry.” She lives in Connecticut with her Old English Sheepdog, Willy and their cat Kitt.
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