Janet Austin’s Biography
I got hooked on weaving in 1972, at Massachusetts College of Art. For 8 years I wove functional items for sale, focusing on color and texture.
Feeling trapped in the horizontal/vertical grid, I earned an MFA in Painting at the University of North Carolina at Greenboro; almost accidentally the weaving and painting came together in 1983.
“Out of Chaos”
from her “Chaos” series
more from the “Chaos” series
Joan Baxter’s Biography
After studying tapestry at Edinburgh College of Art and Warsaw Academy of Fine Arts during the 1970s, Baxter spent eight years working as a weaver and trainer in commercial tapestry studios in the UK and Australia, notably working on the Henry Moore tapestries at West Dean Tapestry Studio. She has been an independent tapestry artist since 1987, regularly exhibiting her work in solo and group shows. Among her many commissioned works are pieces for churches, corporate and private clients.
Moving to the far north of Scotland in 2000 to the place that has inspired so much of her output, marked a new chapter in Baxter’s personal work. A Scottish Arts Council Personal Development Grant in 2002/3 allowed her to expand into less traditional approaches to her medium. Although continuing to weave tapestries in the narrative style that she is known for, she now also makes more experimental pieces alongside them. Her imagery has become more abstract, the interpretation more deliberately weaverly, and the materials more varied. This has resulted in a collection of work that pushes boundaries but does not compromise the beauty and expressive power of the traditional tapestry form.