Geta Bratescu’s conceptual scraps and Hari Kuyo’s broken needles

Artist Geta Brătescu is considered one of the most important figures in the Romanian avant-garde of the 1960s and 1970s.  She studied art and literature but was forced to quit her studies. Born in 1926, she made art for years before the international art world even knew of her existence.

In 1989, when the communist regime ended in Romania, Geta’s work began being exhibited beyond her geograhical boundaries.

Geta, initially, focused on drawing but eventually experimented with many art forms. Those which intrigue me the most are from the ‘Vestigii’  (Vestiges) series. She’s taken old clothes and  fabric scraps to make collages. Geta also makes sewing machine drawings.

Geta Bratescu

Geta in her studio

Geta Bratescu Geta Bratescu

Geta Bratescu Geta Brătescu

Geta at the Threaded Stories Exhibition….”A selection of works from Geta Brătescu’s ‘Vestigii’ (Vestiges) series of 1978 feature patches of scrap fabric layered to form a textured collage. Installed on the wall, their tattered edges and patchwork quality appear to hover on the edges of abstraction and figuration. Scraps of bright fabric patterns and hues are mixed and muddled, as their layers often expose the wall behind. A leading figure of Romanian Conceptualism, Brătescu has been the subject of a recent major solo exhibition at MUSAC (Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Castilla y León) and was recently included in the 2013 Venice Biennale and the 12th Istanbul Biennale in 2011. Brătescu’s work blurs the lines between art and the everyday, enhanced by her focus on the process and production of art and the linking of her upbringing in Communist Romania.”

related links: Interview with Geta Brătescu +  The rise of the OWAs + video interview with Geta Brătescu with English subtitles + Geta Bratescu (Frieze Mag) + 2011 Istanbul Biennial + Fabric collages at pinterest


February 8th is a Japanese festival, Hari Kuyo, celebrating broken pins, needles, scissors and anything else related to the steamstress.

broken needles

This tradition probably springs from the Eastern system of displaying gratitude towards objects that are a source of livelihood. It also reflects the animist belief that all beings and objects have a soul.

related:  booklet by Audrey Yang + Hari Kuyo – Japan’s Unique Memorial Service for Broken Needles + Japan’s Homage to the Needle video + I was witnessing the annual practice of hari-kuyo, the “memorial service for needles”; a quirky Japanese festival which has been celebrated for about four hundred years. +

many thanks to Jo Quirk for telling me about Hari Kuyo!

About Art for Housewives

The Storyteller....
This entry was posted in People and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to Geta Bratescu’s conceptual scraps and Hari Kuyo’s broken needles

  1. The textile pieces are amazing some look as if they are fragments of roman ruins. I just love them, thanks for sharing this wonderful work.

  2. Sharon says:

    Thank you for your post. The collages are truly ‘poetic’. Haikus comes to mind.

  3. sonrie says:

    thanks for the fiber inspiration today as I am gathering to sit and sew!

  4. nuvofelt says:

    Thanks for sharing this. What an inspiration

  5. Jan says:

    Thank you for letting us know about Geta’s work. It’s stunning. I’ve never come across her before. I hope you don’t mind but I’ve put it onto my blog; with a full reference to you and your blog. I just want people to know about Geta’s work. Best wishes

  6. Ciao Jan! Glad you enjoyed Geta’s work. I took a look at your blog and enjoyed the weavings–they remind me of Shiela Hicks.

  7. saskia says:

    like Jan, I hadn’t heard of Gita before, her work is amazing, thanks again for sharing

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s