Thursday, August 13, 2009

Louisiana Artist Loren Schwerd Shows at AMMO

1317 Charbonnet St.
Human hair, mixed media
19" x 23" x 3.5"

Loren Schwerd weaves mourning portraits out of hair. Her interpretation of the traditional craft serves well to illustrate the sense of loss left in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. A fitting tribute for the upcoming anniversary of the disaster, her work will be shown at AMMO beginning Saturday, August 15 and ending September 16.

"Mourning Portrait, is a series of memorials to the communities of New Orleans that were devastated by the flooding which followed Hurricane Katrina. These commemorative objects are made from human hair extensions of the type commonly used by African-American women that I found outside the St. Claude Beauty Supply. The portraits draw on the eighteenth and nineteenth-century tradition of hairwork, in which family members or artisans would fashion the hair of the deceased into intricate jewelry and other objects as symbols of death and rebirth. Working from my own photographs I weave the hair into portraits of the vacant houses of the Ninth Ward neighborhood. By documenting private homes, I venerate the city's losses, both individual and collective."
-Loren Schwerd

See more work from her Mourning Portrait series here.

Opening is from 6-9 pm, Saturday August 15, 2009
938 Royal Street
New Orleans, LA 70116
(504) 301-2584

Ms. Schwerd was featured on the cover of the Nov/Dec 2008 issue of FiberARTS magazine