Icelandic artist James Merry

Embroidery {click}

What do you love about embroidery?
I love the pace and focus and control of hand embroidery. It slows you down. It zooms you into a really precise point of focus, which can be very therapeutic if you have an otherwise quite large and busy life. And the portability of it—I can fit everything I need in my backpack and work on stuff while I’m on flights or watching TV. And then I love the wearability of the end product—they’re not stuck in a picture frame on a wall, you can wear them and bend them and put them in the washing machine when they get dirty. I love that aspect of it.

Screen Shot 2015-07-03 at 1.54.54 PM Screen Shot 2015-07-03 at 1.55.03 PM

Where did the idea come from for your new sportswear series?
At the start of this year, I had been stuck in New York for a bit longer than I am usually comfortable with. I was really missing Iceland and being in the countryside, so I guess it was some kind of silent protest of mine—to take something that was super urban and machine-made and barren (my old Nike sweater), and fertilize it, forcing it to flower by embroidering a glacier flower and moss on it. I guess these embroideries are similar to the drawings in Anatomies, in that they both focus on a very particular point of transformation—the moment when one thing turns into something else. I’m obsessed with that.

Published by Danielle Hogan

Visual artist, writer, curator, educator

One thought on “Icelandic artist James Merry

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