Textile Artist Wins Honoring the Future® Sustainability Award at Smithsonian Craft2Wear Show Prize Recognizes Artist’s Work on Climate Change.
A Copake, New York artist, Vilma Mare, won the “Honoring the Future® Sustainability Award” at last night’s opening of the prestigious 2018 Smithsonian Craft2Wear Show in Washington, DC. The national award, which comes with a $150 prize, recognizes an artist whose work educates the public about climate change or inspires or models a sustainable response to climate change. The winning artist creates clothing inspired by the “eco-harmony and eco-wisdom of indigenous cultures, which live sustainably because of their inner beliefs protecting nature and keeping all its elements (fire, water, air and soil) clean.”
A native of Lithuania, which she left in 1990, Mare seeks to connect to the old world prudence of her homeland’s ancient Baltic civilization. She uses natural fibers (including in the linings) to create unique designs: “I take ancient indigenous symbols and slowly handwork them into a wearable, communicative art, adding a cultural and historical dimension. I layer and hand-stitch those layers in an ornate order, then open the top layers to show at the very bottom a readable sign of native consciousness, a message (as old as human history!) of respect for life, fertility, family and Earth. I invite women and men to carry on a conscious mind and lifestyle.”
“The Sustainability Award showcases art that captures our attention and makes us think about addressing climate change through daily lifestyle decisions,” observes Fran Dubrowski, Director of Honoring the Future. “Mare’s artistry invites us to reflect upon a time when humans lived more harmoniously with nature and to restore more of that harmony to contemporary culture,” Dubrowski adds.
The Sustainability Award is the result of a partnership between Honoring the Future and the Smithsonian Women’ Committee. Jane Milosch, Director of the Smithsonian Provenance Research Initiative, judged the entries.
Honoring the Future is a nonprofit dedicated to harnessing the power of art to educate, empower, and engage the public to act on climate change.
The Smithsonian Women’s Committee is a volunteer grant making organization dedicated to advancing the Smithsonian’s mission to increase and diffuse knowledge. The Smithsonian Women’s Committee produces the Smithsonian Craft2Wear Show to generate funds for grants to support education, outreach and research at the Smithsonian’s 19 museums and galleries, nine research facilities, 20 libraries, and the National Zoo.
The Smithsonian Craft2Wear Show is a curated show of unique wearable art benefiting the Smithsonian.
The 2018 show continues through October 6 at the National Building Museum, 401 F St., NW (Judiciary Square metro station) in Washington, D.C; it features the work of 60 acclaimed clothing, jewelry and accessories designers, all of whom were invited to apply for the Sustainability Award.