THIS IS THE FIRST SERIOUS ART THAT DEBORAH SLABECK BAKER has made in nearly 25 years. She’s been occupied with her family and children . . . and dance had been her creative substitute. In the last year and a half she started making these embroideries and they have just been pouring out of her. They are a synthesis of all her past media and efforts. There are many references: needlework, samplers, hankies, silhouettes, and folk art. But they are also very personal, as this kind of work can be. She thinks of them as drawings, or poems/stories. She works directly on the fabric with thread — no pre-drawing or marking of the fabric — a kind of automatic embroidery. And this year. . . one of Baker’s images is being used as a holiday card for The Art Institute of Chicago!

Via Packer Schopf Gallery in Chicago. All images © Deborah Slabeck Baker.