Teresa Shields Verified listing Verified


    Teresa Shields, an artist residing near Philadelphia in Jenkintown, finds inspiration in fabric, thread, wool fiber, magnets, and wood. Her creative journey started with interpreting abstract shapes from sliced fruits and vegetables through embroidery. Transitioning to wet felting in 2016, she explores transforming wool fibers into solid, yielding hollow forms, marking her ongoing artistic fascination. Known for her idiosyncratic work that beckons tactile engagement, Teresa has exhibited across the United States, accumulating over 20 awards and collections by eight institutions. She has exhibited her work at the Woodmere Art Museum, the Santa Paula Art Museum, and the Hunterdon Art Museum, where she recently won first prize and a forthcoming solo exhibition. Holding a BFA from Carnegie Mellon University and an MFA from Mass College of Art, her educational background deeply influences her artistic vision. Strengthening her ties within the artistic community, Teresa has earned recognition as a resident artist twice - at the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society at Meadowbrook Farm and Abington Art Center. Represented by Gravers Lane Gallery in Philadelphia, her work has been featured in publications and prominent solo exhibitions at Philadelphia art institutions including the University of the Arts.

    I have been around fabric and stitching my whole life. I am a maker. I love things that have a human touch. I look at nature–plant forms, geometry, cell structures, bones, antlers, wings–to see the underlying connections these things have in common. My embroideries are straight forward. I proceed very deliberately one stitch and then another, each knot, each color a decision, meditative and slow, but always moving forward. I rarely rip out stitches.

    My felt making is the opposite of straight forward. It is two steps ahead and one step backwards. The problem child. The art that acts out but is loved unconditionally. If I can’t sleep or have a spare minute, I think about ways to construct things with wool roving and partial felt. The process is like candy, for my ADD brain. Working backwards. Big whole picture, then part to part.

    I have a quirky sense of humor that occasionally shows but also love making things that are simply beautiful. Craftsmanship matters to me. Sometimes I set difficult parameters for myself -just because. The challenge is to make things that show my hand, my skill, my vision.

    Quite simply, I like to make stuff. I work intuitively, inspired by the natural world around me with all of its crazy patterns, circles, pod shapes and patterns-on-patterns. Mother Nature is the ultimate artist. I can manipulate textures. I am very tactile. I like things that have a nice weight to them. I like my fabric pieces to be irresistible to the touch. I love color. I can make an environment sing with color. I see color before I start any piece of art or project. People tend to be afraid of making a mistake with color, but there are no wrong answers. You just have to see what happens when it is next to another color, and make an informed decision based on what you see or like or feel.

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