Creating woven sculpture for beautiful homes here in Western North Carolina is one of the great joys of my life. Especially when the home I’m creating for is incredibly beautiful and my clients are equally as nice. That was the case with this new piece I just finished for a home in The Cliffs at Walnut Cove here in Asheville, North Carolina.
Like many of my clients, these folks first saw my work at the Craft Fair of the Southern Highlands held every July here in Asheville and I had the opportunity to introduce my woven sculpture to them. We talked briefly about their project and then a few weeks later, I reached out to them in order to setup a home visit.
I love visiting the homes of my clients because it gives me the unique opportunity to see what they love, to feel the space and to get an idea of how pieces I create might fit into the space.
Now, I’ve done a lot of woven sculptures for many homes over the years, but this request was a first: to create a piece for a the wall in a stairwell right off the entry. Since I love a challenge, I immediately excited and ready to get to work.
Upon returning to my studio, I started searching for some branches I thought would work in the space and BOOM, there it was… the perfect piece. I mean, this branch looks like it was literally grown for the space. I immediately began preparing it and then mounted it on the wall to sketch an idea.
Since the clients had already told me the kinds of baskets they wanted in this woven sculpture, I had a good idea of where to start. Then I just let nature take it’s course. While the drawing for this piece is very close to the finished product, you never really know how it’s going to turn out until it’s done. After adding many different baskets in a variety of styles, I accented the piece with smaller mountain laurel branches, copper leaves and white clay pods.
The moment of truth is always during installation and thankfully, the piece fit exactly as I planned. With the lighting and ambience of the space, it exceeded all our expectations and has become a beautiful addition to an already fabulous space.
For more information on how I could create a special woven sculpture for your home, click here.
Matt Tommey is a sculptural basketry artist working in Asheville, North Carolina's River Arts District.