VORTEX Sculpture

Deborah Kruger


Sculpture, Fiber on Other

Size: 52 W x 59 H x 29 D in

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About The Artwork

VORTEX, is a sculpture shaped in the ancient and powerful symbol of the spiral. The sculpture is covered with curved feathers that gradually move from white to black. The shape and color of Vortex refers to the ebb and flow of life. I make the feathers from recycled plastic, hand screen-printed with images of endangered birds and overprinted with text in endangered languages such as Yiddish, Shorthand, numerous indigenous languages and excerpts of Rachel Carson's Silent Spring translated into Spanish.

Details & Dimensions

Sculpture:Fiber on Other

Original:One-of-a-kind Artwork

Size:52 W x 59 H x 29 D in

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Delivery Time:Typically 5-7 business days for domestic shipments, 10-14 business days for international shipments.

My latest work focuses on the tragic losses of the 21st century, specifically the extinction of bird species and the death of indigenous languages around the world. The pieces also echo the forced migration of humans, who are similarly victims of war, poverty, famine, climate change, and habitat fragmentation. I create feathered textile paintings, sculptures and installations inspired by murmuration, the fantastic shapes formed by the coordinated flight patterns of starling flocks. Many pieces also follow the outlines of countries and states where there are endangered bird species. The feathers are cut from fused recycled plastic bags and then silk-screened with images from my drawings of endangered birds. The feathers are overprinted with text in endangered languages such as Tzotzil, Yakme, Shorthand and Yiddish, whose last living speakers/users are in steep decline. The plastic feathers embed a layered narrative that addresses the global consumerism driving the loss of both bird and human habitat. I have thus been able to use my prior experience in wallpaper and textile design in the service of broad ecological and cultural concerns. My team-based studio employs women from the local community for silk screening, production and assembly, image development, grants writing, filmmaking, social media, and web design. My hope is that our collaboration fosters professional development in creative arts, ecological awareness and personal empowerment. Wallpaper design and patterning have influenced Kruger’s work since her training in textile design at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City. She has taught, lectured and exhibited her artwork in museums, galleries and universities throughout the US, Mexico, Europe and Australia since the 1980s. Recent career highlights include a 2022 solo exhibition titled Avianto at the Train Station Museum Chapala, Mexico. Parts of this exhibition plus new work will be featured at a solo exhibition at the Joan Derry Berry Gallery at Tennessee Tech University in 2023. Two of Kruger’s large-scale environmental artworks have been acquired by the Museum of Arts and Design (MAD) in New York City and will be on view beginning in May 2024. Her prize-winning work was featured at the Bernard Heller Museum, NYC, the Contemporary Art Museum, Raleigh, NC, the Atlanta-Hartsfield International Airport in Atlanta, GA, the Diego Rivera Museum, Mexico City, and the Saco Art Museum, Saco, ME.

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