Mary Tooley Parker

I am a textile maker using textiles as paint and was honored to be awarded a 2015 Fellowship by the New York Foundation for the Arts. Incorporated in my work are new and recycled wool, cotton, and silk fabric, fleece, my own handspun yarn, mill spun yarn, silk fiber, and metallic fibers. I use natural and synthetic dyes to create colors I want. I only design and work on things that are especially meaningful to me. I have studied with others a bit but am mostly self-taught because I continue to experiment and try to capture new things in new ways. I love my work and do it nearly every day.

I believe that textiles are received by the viewer in a different way than fine art, and there is science showing that a different part of the brain is stimulated when viewing a textile. It appeals to the senses, especially touch, and gives a feeling of warmth before the brain even registers the visual image. You will see people's reactions.