(l) “Morning Tea” (2012) 18″ x 23″
(r) “Roots and Branches” (2011) 44″ x 54″
Katie Hickey’s Statement
My images for tapestry emerge out of what I see and experience around me—landscape, skyscape, and since coming to live on Cape Cod, seascape. I am inspired by the deeply-felt geometry of Navajo weaving, and by the color explorations of 19th and 20th century painters. I am intrigued by the problem-solving that tapestry weaving forces me to do, and the ways in which tapestry has its own unique “mark-making” system that is unlike any other art form.
Every tapestry that I weave is a journey, beginning at the bottom and telling its own story as it grows toward the top, producing both expression and object. I love the feel of the tools in my hands, and though not a patient person in much of my life, I appreciate that it is slow and meticulous work. It always reminds me to be exactly where I am.
Katie Hickey’s Biography
I have been weaving for over 30 years. My first weaving teacher was Judy McCarthy, a weaver who at the time was director of Peter’s Valley Craft School in Layton, NJ. Judy is also my aunt, and I first knew I wanted to weave when I visited her in Tennessee as a young teen-ager and saw a loom sitting in her living room. When I began to study with Judy, the first thing she taught me was how to make images with warp and weft—my first tapestries. I was 22 years old, fresh out of college, and recovering from a heartbreak. I sat at Judy’s loom day after day for several months, and poured my heart and soul into learning to weave. It has sustained and nourished me ever since.
As a tapestry weaver, I am largely self-taught, although I have studied with and been influenced by other tapestry weavers, particularly Micala Sidore and Carol Russell. In 2008, I had the rare privilege of studying with Navajo weaver Jennie Slick. I now teach tapestry through my local adult community education program, where my students constantly inspire and challenge me.