Meet Nicole Dunn Participating In 2014 Los Alamos Artists Studio Tour

Art work by Los Alamos artist Nicole Dunn. Courtesy photo

Art work by Los Alamos artist Nicole Dunn. Courtesy photo

ART News:

This year’s Los Alamos Artists Studio Tour is Oct. 11-12 and the Los Alamos Daily Post is featuring a “Get to Know Your Artist” series leading up to the annual event.

Each of the 16 artists participating in the tour will be showcased prior to the beginning of the tour to allow our readers an opportunity to learn about them and their work.

Meet Los Alamos artist Nicole Dunn:

I became interested in Fiber and cloth from an early age. I still remember the pattern on the fabric of my doll’s clothes for example. My early influences included my grandparents who were artists in Santa Fe; my mother who helped me “make” just about anything I needed for my play, including doll clothes, blankets and more; and an artistic family in general who were always talking and pointing out color and design. 

But what cemented me on my quilt making journey where two events. One was the birth of my two children, and the other was a trip to New York where I happened upon the Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) and an exhibit by Nancy Crow. She was pushing the boundaries of art and quilts then, and still is today. I made the decision that day, more than 20 years ago, to make art using fabric, and haven’t stopped since.

I began by learning as much as I could, taking classes from quilt makers and artists all over the country, trying out new ideas and techniques, developing my skills as an artist and learning to use the tools at my disposal. I quickly turned my love of sewing, and using a longarm quilting machine, in to a business that allowed me flexible working hours so that I could be at home with my children as needed. A good deal of my business now is quilting other people’s quilt tops. My customers design, piece or applique the quilt top and then I quilt it all together with batting and backing on a longarm quilting machine to turn it in to a completed quilt. 

I also enjoy making quilts on commission. They may be a small baby quilt with a certain theme, or, like a recently completed quilt that I made for a veteran and his family using a red white and blue color scheme and the landscape where they live. Working with someone to create their vision and mine melded together is very satisfying.

My love of travel and photography has greatly influenced my quilting as well. Taking photographs of all different subject matter gives me endless possibilities and ideas for future art quilts. The landscapes, colors, and cultures that surround us here in New Mexico are very influential in my work as well.

Most simply put, I love making quilts that bring joy to people and connect me to them. Quilts are a tangible reminder of an event, place or person. They bring joy to me in the making, and if someone else loves a quilt I’ve made because it reminds them of their grandmother, or the color is right, or it is unique in their life’s experience somehow, then I couldn’t ask for more. I hope you’ll come to see my studio in October, I promise to have lots to look at, enjoy and inspire!

Learn more about the Los Alamos Artists Studio Tour here.

Read about previously published artist Joanne Kozuchowski here.

Read about previously published artist Patrick Soran here.

Read about previously published artist Fran Stoval here.

Read about previously published artist Heather Ward here.

Read about previously published artist Bettina Hehlen here.

Read about previously published artist Becky Nystrom here.

Read about previously published artist Bruce Warren here.

Read about previously published artist Stephanie Hagelberg here.

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