Bonnie Peterson


Mono Lake, Brewer & Public Trust; embroidery on silk of william brewer’s 1863 journal; 43×50 inches


Drone Shadow; embroidery on velvet and silk; 52×48 inches


I investigate cultural and environmental issues using ornate embroidery on textiles and topographic maps. Mixing a variety of source materials such as scientific data, early explorer’s journals and trail observations, I stitch elaborate colorful words and phrases on velvet and silk fabrics to make large narrative wall hangings. Paper topographic maps are another surface for embellishments with pen, graphs and photos attached with large primitive stitches. Wilderness experiences inform my work. Lengthy backpacking trips are significant to integrating the impacts of wilderness, contemporary society and historical context into my artistic process. Using traditional Victorian crazy quilt stitches, primitive samplers and narrative quilts as a point of departure, my artwork provides a novel opportunity for the consideration of current events and ethical questions.

Some of my recent projects examine geophysical climate issues. Instigated by a series of collaborations with scientists, I began to look for simple explanations for some of the important principles in climate and environmental science to use in my projects. I exploit data and statistics from research articles for graphic embroideries. I share a focused sense of discovery in communicating environmental interactions within a palate of intricate, rich textures and compositions.