Plexus No 10; The National Centre for Craft & Design, UK (2012) Photos: Electric Egg
Mexican installation artist, Gabriel Dawe, has been delighting audiences with his awe-inspiring coloured thread masterpieces for the past three years. His complex web of coloured threads defy comprehension as to how they are constructed, except that it must require meticulous planning and a great deal of patience. The mystical rainbow-like visions it casts once complete pay huge dividends for the viewer and no doubt the artist himself. Beginning his education with a design degree in his native Mexico, Dawe picked up his creative studies ten years later (after living in Montreal for several years) with a Masters in Arts and Technology in Dallas where he is currently based. Initially working with textiles, Dawe was invited to exhibit at Centraltrak, The University of Texas at Dallas Artists Residency Programme, in early 2010. The exhibition explored the overlap between fashion and architecture, which led Dawe to create his first large scale thread installation. Since then he has created more than 15 installations of this type, a series named Plexus, meaning an intricate network or weblike formations. His largest work to date is Plexus C2, for a TED conference held at the Long Beach Performing Arts Center in LA. Taking 40 hours over six days, with the help of one assistant to install and using 60kms of sewing thread – that’s from Christchurch to the Waipara Valley – Dawe’s work garnered so much attention during the course of the actual installation, the convention centre decided to acquire it as a permanent feature. Dawe says it will have a lifespan of seven to ten years before the thread begins to sag and requires restringing. Dawe has ambitious plans for his future works to go even bigger and take his installations outdoors.
Torres de Satélite; Centraltrak, Dallas (2011) Photos: Kevin Todora
Plexus No 4 at Dallas Contemporary (2010) Photos: Kevin Todora
Plexus C2; Long Beach Performing Arts Center, LA (2012) Photos: Gretchen Wustrack
Plexus No 13, Gallerie Lot 10, Brussels (2012) Photos: Matthieu Kavyrchine
To view more of Dawe’s inspiring work, visit his website, Gabriel Dawe. Those of you residing in or passing through Dallas between now and the end of August, pop in to the Conduit Gallery, where in a solo exhibition Blinding Pain, Dawe returns to his roots with original textile creations made from fabric, sequins, and many, many pins. Subverting the idea of pins and pain, Dawe’s objects strangely possess a softness and sensual tactility.
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