The arts and crafts influx in interior design is no new trend. Macramé, textile hangings made from repeated knotting or weaving, have been a hot trend since the craft had been relieved of its dowdy 1970s aesthetic.
Now, as macramé becomes ubiquitous in stylish interiors, a new vanguard of artists are expanding the medium, re-thinking materials and going beyond the frame.
Macramé artists such as Emily Katz and Sally England have been heralded as some of the most innovative champions of the medium. Primarily working with traditional small-scale hangings and teaching workshops, Katz’s work has helped evolve the DIY practice into a major trend in design. While England, who works on large-scale commissions with companies like Instagram and Nike as well as solo exhibitions with galleries Now Space Gallery and Esqueleto in Los Angeles has helped bridge the gap between design and art.
The gap is continually narrowing with young artists like Rosha Yaghmai who work in mixed media to create wall hangings made from alternative materials like rubber or optical lenses as in her piece Optometer, Curtain which was shown at Kayne Griffin Corcoran.
San Francisco-based artist Dana Hemenway works with similarly unexpected materials to make sculptures that more immediately riff off of the macramé craft. Fusing tech with the traditional weaving style, Hemenway’s works utilize cord, plug-ins, ceramics, and light bulbs to arrive at chic industrial pieces.
Working with more typical materials such as poplar, silk, and beading, artist Cindy Hsu Zell creates works that recall decorative curtain rope. Elevating rope and tassel material to sleek pieces that invite touch and movement. Zell, who is based in Los Angeles, has collaborated with designers such as Kudd Krig Home to create custom pillows and textiles.
Similar to macramé, air plant wall installations and interior landscaping is quickly becoming as ubiquitous as framed art in spaces. Josh Rosen, aka Airplantman, has quickly become a well-known name in the field fusing air plants and sculpture. Framed works for hanging, as well as small sculptural vases, and large-scale installations all comprise Rosen’s practice.
Succulents, textiles, and even extension chord, art on the wall can be so much more than a painting in a frame.