The inspirations for Laura Goldstein's hand-dyed and printed cloth images come from just about everywhere: flea markets in London, old catalogs and original photography taken in Thailand, India, Europe, tiny towns, and out-of-the-way places--to name just a few. The artist maintains hundreds of file folders and journals and draws ideas from them regularly to expand her visual vocabulary. She constantly experiments with carefully selected images to create different combinations and patterns.
In this age of mass-produced products, Goldstein's pieces are printed and dyed one at a time. All are slightly different. Many of her fabrics include a layer printed with hand-written family letters. The handwriting is from the late 1800s when penmanship played an important role in defining a person. In her larger works, she often hides a tiny image or two within the design--most of them symbols for good luck.
"Play value" is important to Goldstein, as she comes from a specialty toy background and recognizes the need for all ages to play and dream. All of her collections boast two completed sides--giving the wearer a "two for one" experience. A pillow or scarf can be displayed one way or the other, displaying two completely different colors and images. Her scarves and wraps, when worn, play off this collage-like effect.
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