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Seth Damm

Neon Zinn

"Every day that I shape my lengths of dyed rope into wearable forms is a day I try to learn, listen, and be open to the world at large. The only intermediary between the hand and the mind is the heart."

Seth Damm is a full-time artist working in the realm of wearable fiber art. Cotton rope being his primary medium which he dyes, weaves, winds, cuts, and shapes into abstract sculptural forms that reveal their full dimension on the body. While spending the majority of his time in the studio involved in the meticulous handcrafted production of his designs, he also partners with photographers, clothing designers, models, stylists, and production assistants to create, edit, and share visual content. Under his label Neon Zinn, a reference to civil rights activist/historian Howard Zinn, Seth stays grounded in work that expands the field of representation and engages with an abundance of diverse voices.

Each design, from the most complex to the simplest, involves the process of measuring raw cotton rope specific to the application, and then dyeing those lengths in multiple dye baths to achieve the desired coloration. Once the rope is rinsed and dried, the necklace or bracelet is assembled using a variety of techniques refined over the last ten years. Various colors of yarn, beads, and metals are applied to the dyed rope for added texture and detail.

Damm graduated from the Evergreen State College in 1994 (B.A.) with an emphasis on printmaking and painting. Eighteen years later, after exploring the many creative permutations an artist can take after college, it was a length of shipping rope that caught his eye one day while searching for new materials. That rope changed his entire trajectory. Through years of dedicated, self-taught experimentation and refinement, his unique designs draw the attention of customers and collaborators from across the realms of fashion, design, and craft.

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