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Marianne Fairbanks

My work spans the fields of art, design, and social practice, seeking to chart new material and conceptual territories, to innovate solution-based design, and to foster fresh modes of cultural production.

My recent solo work made for exhibition pays homage to sophisticated textile traditions including age-old indigenous processes in form-making and domestic handspun textile production. It is equally informed by the Platonic geometry used in architectural forms and sculptures pioneered by Buckminster Fuller. Mathematics is at the heart of these systems of logic and serves as the springboard for bold, material-based explorations. Between the inflated scale and radical fluorescent palette that refuses to be ignored, the sculptures and installations are loud and penetrating. Whereas the drawings, jacquard weaving and prints more quietly pose questions around value, and the labor and time embedded in process and history. With playfulness and wit, the work destabilizes conventional gender based value systems of hard and soft form-making, and encourages a deep engagement with our material world.

Beyond using the conceptual and formal potential of textiles, I work collaboratively to invent new textile technologies. Though we rarely recognize textiles as a core technology, the humble string has been the foundation for innovations and efficiencies that touch nearly every aspect of our lives from architecture to agriculture, medicine to manufacturing. One aspect of my research is to build a photovoltaic textile. Such a textile could become the pliable foundation for wearable and portable technology capable of providing renewable, sustainable power for devices such as personal electronics. In seperate research, I have been collaborating with a polymer engineer to build a series of 3-D printed textiles that will explore the boundaries between pliability and rigidity using a range of additive manufacturing processes and polymers. This new manufacturing method has the potential to create printed structures that can provide compression strength and flexibility. This research relates strongly back to the conceptual conceits of hard and soft that I explore in my solo practice, and also provides me a chance to use apply my technical and conceptual understanding of textiles, my design sensibility, and my passion for creative problem-solving toward innovations for the 21st century.


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All materials used in making the art shown at Matt McLeod Fine Art Gallery are of archival quality, used by professional artists. This includes all canvas, paints, paper, metals, glass, wood and clay bodies used in creating originals. This also includes inks, paper and other substrates used in print reproductions.

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Contact Matt McLeod Fine Art Gallery

Thank you for visiting Matt McLeod Fine Art Gallery! 

Call us. Our Arkansas local number is 501-725-8508 and our toll-free long distance number is 877-744-1946.

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Matt McLeod Gallery Hours

Monday - Friday

10:00 am - 6:00 pm

Saturday, 10:00 am - 4:00 pm

Opening Receptions

5 pm - 8pm


We are available for special events, private viewings, & space rental. Call us for an appointment!