After hosting a local garden club at my studio earlier this spring for a program centered around my sculptural work, one of the members asked me to create a special piece for her home. This was a new home for her and completely different that any other aesthetic she'd ever employed within her design background. The space features cool, calm colors, modern lines and beautiful windows overlooking a spectacular garden. Enjoy!
"Working with Matt was a wonderful experience. I described what I wanted for my dining room table and he created exactly what I had envisioned. He didn’t mind my input at all as some artists do. I was absolutely thrilled with the result." ~ Nancy N.
"We met Matt one day as we happened to stroll into his studio where he stopped weaving a basket to introduce himself and from there an instant friendship was formed. His beautiful pieces of art are easy to admire and love. Each piece has its own story from Matt's treks into the forests to collect the raw materials to the finished product. Matt's humble and genial manner made it easy for two relatively uneducated, but keen art lovers to know we had to have his work in our home. He created three beautiful, one of a kind pieces which feature in our home." Marty & Peter V, Clients.
Problem spaces seem to be one of my specialties. This beautiful english cottage tucked away in Cashiers, North Carolina was perfectly designed and decorated but simply needed one more crowning adornment to make it perfect. While visiting a friend's home in the area, the owners of the cottage became familiar with my work and commissioned me to create a special piece for their home. They wanted nested whimsey while still having enough presence to be seen over 12' high in the room. This woven wall sculpture fit the bill perfectly!
This was a fun project.... I created a fireplace mantel sculpture for a mountain home located in Cashiers, North Carolina. The home has been in the family for many, many years and now the current owners are doing an upgrade to add their special touch to the home. Part of the new addition was including original artwork. I worked with these clients to create a 60" wide x 20" tall sculpture that would not only be full and invoke a 'nested' aesthetic but also be open enough to enjoy the beautiful original rockwork on the fireplace.
For the last 25 years or so, Grove Park Inn has hosted the premier Arts & Crafts Conference, featuring the work of craftsmen and artists who specialize in furniture and decor from that era. Last year, I was pleased to be the featured artist at Grovewood Galler during this special weekend and met a couple who fell in love with my work. Thankfully, I was commissioned by them to create a contemporary sculpture for their home. Here's how it turned out... enjoy!
Here's a few images from a recent commission I installed at a home in Seven Glens development over in Weaverville, NC. This new home has a modern, clean feel with stone accents throughout. Perfect for my contemporary woven sculpture. Hope you enjoy!
I've just returned from a really great week at Spring Island located in the beautiful low-country marshlands of South Carolina. This luxury coastal community is as dedicated to the arts as it is preservation of the land and creating exquisite living spaces, both indoors and out.
I arrived amid a torrential rainstorm but quickly found the cottage where I would be staying, thanks to my wonderful host for the week, a resident and member of the organization on the island which coordinates artist visits. She not only got me settled in my accommodations but insisted I have lunch at her home and then run out for a quick tour of the island once the rain cleared. We did and my introduction to the beauty of the island began.
If you've never been to Spring Island - or any of the southern barrier islands for that matter - they are like entering a primordial forest of wonder. As you can see from the pictures here, the vegetation is lush with towering live oak trees, spanish moss dripping from every tree and vines so plentiful, it made this basketmaker wish for another week just to explore the beauty! I also encountered the long-leaf pine and quintessential South Carolina palmetto, both of which don't grow here in the mountains. A welcome change.
During my time on the island, most of my days were filled with teaching a group of 10 students who are all residents - either seasonal or full time - of the island. We created a variety of different baskets, many of which were made from materials we harvested right there on the island. My evenings were filled with lovely times of food, wine and conversation around the table with new friends either in homes or at the Spring Island Club. On Wednesday night, the club hosted a very well attended artist reception for me in their Gathering Room overlooking the marsh and Thursday I was honored to give the "Trust Talk" to a packed house sponsored by the Spring Island Trust, where I shared my work and entertained questions from the audience.
My last day on the island, I was treated to a wine and cheese reception at the home of one of my students, who happened to become one of my clients. I was pleased to be able to install a beautiful wall hanging in their entry; the perfect addition to an already beautiful home.
So, as you can tell my time on Spring Island was very special. The best parts were connecting with all the people who made my experience so wonderful, selling my work to folks who loved it and experiencing the land. The second best? Being invited back!
For more information on Spring Island, check out their website at http://springisland.com/
Matt Tommey is a sculptural basketry artist working in Asheville, North Carolina's River Arts District.