I began my work as a fiber artist making and selling vibrant, colorful, botanical based wearable art. Although this was a successful endeavor, I realized that my “fun and funky felt” served as a type of approval-seeking and that I risked limiting my audience and my full range of expression.
Less driven to produce sellable “products”, I became freer and more open to experimentation. I turned to felted sculpture and took exuberant color out of the equation. “No added color” became my palette and gave me room for abstraction. I used minimally processed alpaca from a small ranch breeder, bought and processed my own wool fleece, and eliminated the dyeing process. Then I stumbled across my collection of old sewing patterns and took a break from felting. Sewing patterns have taken root and a life of their own.
The end results are individual works and installations that reference both the human body and the existential frailty of our condition—personal and planetary. The forms sometimes appear as atoms, molecules, orbs or planets; fragile, ethereal and celestial. Other times they are visceral and alimentary; curvaceous bulges, hollowed-out torsos, guts, sacs, tubes, and pods. They are colonies teeming with life and death.
Monica Zavala Durazo – Curriculum Vitae
2002 – Bachelor of Arts, magna cum laude, Creative Writing, University of Arizona
2016 – Border Book: artist’s book structure: C.J. Shane, Tucson, AZ
2015 – Intro to Lino-cut print making: David Contreras, Tucson, AZ
2015 – Encaustic Collage and Assemblage: Miles Conrad, Tucson, AZ
2014 – Making Letterpress Posters: Amanda Beekhuizen, Tucson, AZ
2013 – Poetry in Letterpress Print: Alice Vinson, Tucson, AZ
2010 – Nuno Felt and Stitched Layers: Polly Sterling, Skaneateles, NY
2009 – Fibers Through Time: Sally Hall & Susan Thompson, Tucson, AZ
Sievers School of Fiber Art, Washington Island, WI:
2008 – Felt, Resist Dye, Bead! Chad Alice Hagen
2008 – Color for Knitting Dye Workshop, Deb Menz
2008 – Beginning Spinning & Rainbow Dyeing, Deb Jones
2005 – Mixed Media Jewelry, Donna Kallner
2005 – Beginning Knitting, Carol Anderson, Cottage Creations
Galleries & Exhibitions
Union Street Gallery, Chicago Heights, IL
2017 – National Collage Society, 32nd Annual Juried Exhibit: Costurera (Seamtress)
University of La Verne College of Law, Ontario, CA
2017 – Fatal Beauty: The Border and the Sonoran Desert: Migrants and Refugees