SRU students’ batik art reaches colorful heights


batik artwork

March 29, 2016

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Batik cloths made by 12 Slippery Rock University art students will be exhibited during "Here & There," from 2-4 p.m., April 9 and 16 in SRU's Old Stone House.

The batik technique is an ancient and global one. According to the Batik Guild, the process has been practiced for centuries.

To make batik in the traditional manner, artists block out selected areas of a cloth by brushing or drawing hot wax over them and the cloth is then dyed.

Contemporary batik involves different techniques. An artist may use etching, discharge dyeing and stencils.

The "Here & There," exhibit, presented by the Stone House Center for Public Humanities project at SRU, will provide visitors with the opportunity to take a self-guided tour of the Old Stone House, a former stagecoach tavern. SRU students also will be available to teach children batik-like activities.

The Public Humanities program connects the University's humanities faculty to the broader community by offering collaborative art educational programs

The exhibit is the latest collaboration between SRU and the Academy of Fine Arts in Gdansk, Poland. Barbara Westman, SRU associate professor of art who teachers fibers, is one of the partnership leaders.

SRU's partnership with Poland's Academy of Fine Arts has resulted in a number of collaborative endeavors in fiber arts. In 2015, Harrisburg's Dixon University Center displayed artwork using textiles, paper, wool and more.

SRU students' batik work inspired students at Grove City Area High School to begin making batiks in their community art program, said Laura Coulter, program coordinator for the Stone House Center for Public Humanities.

The Stone House, which is owned and operated by SRU, is located at the intersection of routes 8, 258 and 173, just south of Slippery Rock.

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