With a background in painting and an affinity for fibers, abstract artist Emma Balder is constantly discovering ways to manipulate her chosen materials through a painter’s lens. In Balder’s main fiber painting practice, she reassigns the smallest parts of textile waste to a medium that functions like paint. Using a paintbrush and matte medium to push and pull the material along the substrate, Balder paints with the fibers to create these innovative works. Mark-making with graphite and acrylic paint follow as a response to the colors and contours of the fibers. The process is a collaboration with her material - creating a new reality for these “expendable” parts and referencing a universal experience of transformation.
Emma Balder is a contemporary artist with a BFA in Painting from the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD). Her work has been featured in Art Maze Mag, Dialogist, Denver Life Magazine, 303 Magazine, Art Reveal Magazine, Emboss Magazine, Peripheral Vision Press, The Houston Chronicle, and more. She has shown in venues such as Trestle Gallery, New York; Torpedo Factory Art Center, Alexandria, Virginia; Aqua Art Fair, Miami; The Lincoln Center, Fort Collins, Colorado; ArtHelix Gallery, Brooklyn, New York; Gutstein Gallery, Savannah, Georgia; Stella Ripley Contemporary, Quebec, Canada; Heidi Vaughan Fine Art, Houston, Texas among others. In 2015, Balder completed a one-year Staff Artist Residency Fellowship at the Vermont Studio Center and was named a finalist of the Peripheral Vision Foundation Fellowship in 2016. She has facilitated fiber painting workshops throughout Colorado, including at the MCA Denver and ReCreative. The artist has collaborated with companies such as Meow Wolf, Sweetgreen, and recently PepsiCo's LIFEWTR for a Series 9 2020 bottle design. Balder is an artist-in-residence at BOX13 Artspace in Houston, Texas, and is represented by Heidi Vaughan Fine Art in Houston and Stella Ripley Contemporary in Montreal, Canada.