Enriching the Arts

Featured Artist: Barbara J. West, BA, ASA, SCA

Paint-Stitch_MG_9037-Edit copy

Barbara J. West, Paint and Stitch 4: The Grid


Barbara began her career in urban planning in 1972, with an Honours Degree in Geography from the University of Alberta.  From there, she moved into consulting to large organizations after obtaining a Master of Science Degree in Organization Development from Pepperdine University in the United States. She taught at the University of Monterrey after relocating to Mexico, also consulting in Latin America, the United States, and Canada.  Finally, she returned home to start a family, and worked for the City of Toronto in upper management for several years.

Friends in High Places

Barbara J. West, Friends in High Places

The call of the mountains was strong however, and in 1989 she moved to the Alberta Rockies, where she discoveredher passion for textiles.  This passion was subsequently transformed into a commitment to challenge the art/craft boundary by utilizing textiles as a medium for the creation of art. Currently, the techniques and materials used in the creation of each of her contemporary pieces become a part of the story. Barbara’s work includes installation, soft sculpture, painting and textiles.

Barbara achieved a First Class Honours BA degree in Embroidered Textiles from Middlesex University in Great Britain in 2011, which motivated her to expand into three-dimensional and installation work.  This program, more than any single artist, has influenced the direction she currently takes in her artwork. That being said, she also admires and has been inspired by the artists Lavinia Fontana, Elisabeth Vigée-Lebrun and Sonia Delaunay.

Barbara has been published in the United States and Canada, and has exhibited in Europe, Japan, the United States and Canada.  Several of her pieces have won national awards.  She is a juried member of the Canadian Society of Artists, the Prism textile exhibition group in Great Britain and in the Studio Art Quilts Associates organization in the United States.

e.Bottoms Up_Barbara J. West

Bottoms Up, Barbara J. West

The focus of many of her latest works is an examination of some of the contributors to the state of mother/daughter relationships in Western culture.  Aspects of institutions such as myths, religion, tradition, culture and technology are considered. This larger project Hanging by a Thread integrates the legacy of fibre and textile techniques with the interactions between mothers and their daughters.  It has been the most ambitious to date, and reflects the results of her journey in integrating concepts, techniques and materials.

ASA and TREX Address

Crossroads Art Centre
#302 - 1235 26th Avenue SE
Calgary, AB T2G 1R7
ASA Phone: (403) 265-0012
TREX Phone: (403) 262-4669

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