Collaborating artists Gayle Fraas and Duncan Slade's work has always explored the relationship of ornamental surface and portrayal of landscape in quest of a sense beyond place. Recognized for developing techniques for screen printing and painting with dye on fabric, other mediums include paint and ink on paper, metal, and wood. The collaborative
dialogue has been continuous since the mid 70's.
Their work has been selected for some of the defining touring exhibitions that have influenced the field of Art Quilts: "The New American Quilt" originating at the Museum of Contemporary Crafts, NYC. in 1976, "The Art Quilt" opening at the Los Angeles Municipal Museum in 1986 and "Six Continents of Quilts: the Permanent Collection of the Museum of Art and Design," NYC.touring internationally from 2002-2005.
Collections include the Philadelphia Museum, Baltimore Museum, MD, Peabody Essex Museum, Museum of Art and Design, NYC., the International Quilt Study Center at the University of Nebraska and the corporate collections of Fidelity Investments, Nuveen, IL.,
Hilton Corporation and Elmira College. Public collections in Maine include Portland Public Library, Department of Transportation, Department of Marine Resources and the University of Maine/Orono.
Several of the books where work is featured: Paintings of Maine by Carl Little, American Quilts: the Democratic Art 1780-2007 by Robert Shaw, The Art Quilt by Robert Shaw,
Quilts Today by Robert Shaw, The Art Quilt by Penny McMorris and Michael Kile and
Art to Wear by Julie Shaffler Dale.
Fraas and Slade continue to lecture on their work and teach. Workshops have been taught
at conferences, art centers and colleges including Haystack Mt. School of Crafts, ME., Arrowmont School of Crafts, TN. and the School of Visual Arts, NYC.
In 1989 and 2003 the artist team received Maine Visual Artist Fellowships and in 1995 a National Endowment for the Arts/ New England Foundation Visual Artist Fellowship.
For a long time, we've been painting places. It is from the specifics of a site that meaning and perceptions are engendered. Places are stories told through the remnants of history and the experiences of residents, through the luxury of wealth, the struggle for existence and the endurance of nature. Symbolic and ornamental elements respond to information gleaned from the history, geology, and culture specific to that place, functioning as visual prompts that by association give meaning to the whole.
Our work combines the tools and materials of folk art, applied and fine arts. Works are informed by textile design, medieval manuscript illumination, the Hudson River School's reverence for the ideal and the graphic language of flags.
Our collaboration is for the most part conceptual. Pieces are conceived and executed by either one of us or as a team. It is the content, intent, and meaning of the work that we share. Each piece continues our visual conversation.
"No places is a place until things that have happened in it are remembered in history, ballads, yarns, legends or monuments. Fictions serve as well as fact."
Gayle Fraas and Duncan W. Slade 2023
Resume pdf is being provided abridged, please contact us for further exhibition, commission collection or biographical questions or information.