The tapestry technique is unique because horizontal weft yarns are woven between the fixed vertical warps only as far as each color is required, creating a design that is an integral part of the fabric.
It should not be confused with needlepoint or crewel embroidery, where yarn is applied to an already existing fabric structure. However, Myla often adds embroidered and quilted embellishments to her work for heightened surface interest.
In addition, Myla periodically uses the eccentric weft weaving technique in which the weft yarn moves away from its horizontal orientation to flow in arcs or at acute angles to the warp, for additional depth and texture affects.It should not be confused with needlepoint or crewel embroidery, where yarn is applied to an already existing fabric structure. However, Myla often adds embroidered and quilted embellishments to her work for heightened surface interest.
Myla Collier studied at Parsons, and graduated with a degree in Fashion Design from FIT in New York. She worked there in sportswear design and textile marketing before moving to California. While still in New York she started weaving tapestry at the Craft Students League. In the years since then she has studied with Mary Pendleton, Noel Bennett, Cheryl Samuel, Martha Stanley, Archie Brennan, Susan Martin Maffei and Joan Baxter.
During the 1980’s while at home with her young son, she began restoring Navajo and Mexican textiles. In seeking deeper knowledge of these old fabrics, she worked at the Southwest Museum in Los Angeles, assisting in photographing and cataloging its Native American textile collection.
This experience sparked her interest in native cultures beyond weaving and into further schooling. She earned a B.A. and M.A. in Cultural Anthropology from California State University, Long Beach. She has taught Cultural Anthropology and Life Story Writing at Cuesta College and Cal Poly University, San Luis Obispo. After a move back to Orange County in 2014, Myla was awarded a one year grant in 2016 by the Picerne Foundation’s Artist Outreach Program to teach Tapestry Weaving. She taught both Life Story Writing and Tapestry Weaving for Santiago Canyon College in Orange, California until her retirement in 2021.
There is an Indian myth that speaks of cloth-making as a metaphor for life . . . the stretched "fixed" threads of the warp being the universal laws and the truths we live by. The wandering weft threads trace the path of each individual as they thread their way between events, relationships and connections.
As a transplanted easterner, I am intrigued by the overpowering beauty of so many California landscapes. In my newest work I am combining images that often include a archaeological, geological or historical reference. My goal is to create images that are strong from a distance yet. on closer inspection, reveal a design that is integrated with the weaving process - each influencing and inspiring the other.
Tapestry and the making of it is an obsession I can not ignore. Time and patience are not an issue with tapestry. Either you need to weave or you don’t, I do.
California State University, Long Beach, MA Cultural Anthropology
California State University, Long Beach, BA Cultural Anthropology
FIT, State University of New York, AAS Fashion Design
2013 - 2021 Instructor - Life Story Writing , Santiago Canyon College, Orange CA.92869
2016 - 2021 Instructor - Tapestry Weaving, Santiago Canyon College, Orange CA. 92869
Selected Juried Exhibitions
2019 - Wellspring - San Luis Obispo Museum of Art
2018 - Dimensions 2018 - San Luis Obispo Museum of Art
2016 - Elemental Tapestry: Earth, Air, Fire and Water, San Jose, CA
2016 - Elemental Tapestry: Earth, Air, Fire and Water, San Francisco, CAn
2014 - Artists for Art's Sake, Millard Sheets Art Center, Pomona CA
2014 - Third Annual Holiday Salon, ArtExchange, Long Beach, CA
2014 - Water, Water , Tapestry Weavers West, EBMUD, Oakland, CA
2014 - Orange County Fine Art Association, South of Tahoe -
Showcase Gallery , Santa Ana, CA
2014 - Orange County Fine Art Association, All Media Show, First Prize -
Showcase Gallery ,Santa Ana California
2013 - Tapestries Alight on the Central Coast - San Luis Obispo Museum of Art
San Luis Obispo, California
2013 - American Tapestry Biennial 9 - Fort Wayne Museum of Art - Fort Wayne, Indiana
2012 - From Shore to Vine - Vina Robles Winery - Paso Robles, California
2011 - Dimensions 2011- San Luis Obispo Museum of Art - San Luis Obispo, California
2010 - Tapestry Weavers West - Richmond Art Center - Richmond, California
2010 - Natural Images - Morro Bay Natural History Museum - Morro Bay, California
2009 - Dimensions - San Luis Obispo Art Center - San Luis Obispo, California
2009 - Fiber at the Steynberg Gallery - San Luis Obispo, California
2009 - Surface and Form - San Luis Obispo Art Center - San Luis Obispo, California
2008 - Cutting Edge Fiber - San Luis Obispo Art Center, San Luis Obispo, California
2008 - Pecha Kucha #2 - Steynberg Gallery - San Luis Obispo, California
2007 - Tapestry on the Edge, Nordic Heritage Museum - Tacoma Washington
1990 - Fine Line - Oregon School of Arts and Crafts - Portland, Oregon
American Tapestry Alliance http://americantapestryalliance.org
Tapestry Weavers West http://www.tapestryweaverswest.org
South Coast Weavers and Spinners Guild http://www.scwsg.org
2019 - Summer Artist in Residence - Yosemite National Park
2016 - Artist Outreach Project, City of Orange, California
Picerne Family Foundation, Newport Beach, CA
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