Liz Collins

Artist Biography

Liz Collins is a New York City- based artist who has been working across art, design, fashion, installation, and performance for two decades. Employing a range of natural to synthetic materials, incorporating vivid colors, dynamic patterns, emphasizing textures and inventive structures, Collins enjoys pushing the limits and doing the unexpected across the spectrum of textile media. She has had solo exhibitions at the Tang Museum, Saratoga Springs, NY; Heller Gallery, NY; AMP Gallery, Provincetown, MA; Occidental College, LA; Textile Arts Center, NY; AS220, Providence, RI; and the Knoxville Museum of Art in Tennessee. Her work has been included in numerous exhibitions including at the ICA/Boston; Leslie Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art; the Museum of FIT; the Milwaukee Art Museum; the Museum of Arts and Design and MoMA, and can been seen in the upcoming New Museum show Trigger: Gender as a Tool and as a Weapon. Collins’ awards include a USA Fellowship, a MacColl Johnson Fellowship, and residencies at the Siena Art Institute, Haystack, Yaddo, AIR Alaska, and the Museum of Arts and Design. 

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Artist Statement

My current work explores the boundaries between painting, fiber arts, and installations, creating spaces that envelop the viewer in vibrating color fields. My process is experimental and performative by nature. Forms evolve from a desire to transcend not only distinctions between fine art and craft, but order and chaos as well. To that end, explosions, vibrations, and optical phenomena materialize, shatter, fragment, and then precisely re-align. In my current installation at the Tang Museum, for example, thick tangles of black thread cascade from a woven ceiling panel designed with red and yellow zig-zags, their dense yet delicate flow simultaneously obscuring and revealing the hard-edged geometry from which they pour. Physical space and architecture are active players in my work, giving discrete objects new form and meaning – paintings become rugs, which become wallpaper – and allowing the viewer’s embodied experience to take center stage. The dizzying array of sensations evoked by the cacophonic play of optics, texture, color and scale, recreates for them my vacillating experience of the world as a place of stupendous wonder and cosmic energy.

Liz Collins

Liz Collins

September 1, 2018 - October 1, 2018

Thread by Thread

March 15, 2017 - April 23, 2017

2017 Peter Schjeldahl, “The Art World As Safe Space,” October 9, 2017 The New Yorker

2017 “When It Comes To Gender, Let Confusion Reign,” September 28, 2017 New York Times

2017 Andrew Gardner, “How a Revolution in “Ugly” design is Upending Conventions of Beauty,” September 6, 2017 Artsy

2016 Romanov Grave, Interview with Liz Collins May 22, 2016 Blog

2016 Wendy Vogel, “Portfolio – Liz Collins” November 30, 2016 Bomb Magazine

2015 Samantha Elliot, KNIT:Innovation in Fashion, Art, Design, Laurence King

2013 Catherine Lord and Richard Meyer, Art and Queer Culture:1885-2005, Phaidon

2010 Glenn Adamson, The Craft Reader, Berg

2010 Jessica Hemmings, In the Loop: Knitting Now, Black Dog

2008 Freddie Robins, Knit New York, Textile Forum March issue

2008 Julia Bryan Wilson, The Politics of Craft, MODERN PAINTERS, February issue

2007 Sabrina Gschwandtner, KnitKnit: Presenting 27 Innovative Knitters and Their Projects, Stewart, Tabori and Chang

2006 Sandy Black, Fashioning Fabrics: Contemporary Textiles in Fashion, Black Dog Publishing

2006 David Sokol, Knit in Peril, Metropolis, January issue

2005 Eric Wilson, In Fashion, Who Really Gets Ahead?, Styles Section, New York Times, November

2003 Guy Trebay, The Subtle Power of Lesbian Style, Styles Section, New York Times, June