Basic Forms in Black and White 1975, tapestry by Roma Center
Basic Forms in Black and White 1975 tapestry by Roma Center.
1975, linen, cotton, wool, mohair, alpaca, angora, synthetic fibre, 180 x 200cm. Photograph: Terence Bogue. Ararat Regional Art Gallery Collection. Purchased with the assistance of the Ararat Gallery Social Committee.
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Courtesy the artist.
Roma Center was an abstract painter, working as Roma Thompson, who bought a loom and taught herself to weave, initially to take a teaching job. Her woven work was included in the National Gallery of Victoria’s, Craft Victoria 75 exhibition which toured to regional galleries.
Center’s work arrived at Ararat Regional Art Gallery in September 1975 and was subsequently acquired for the permanent collection. In the Craft Victoria 75 catalogue, Center applied the term ‘non-traditional tapestry’ to describe her work, which was woven on a treadle loom and would mostly not conform to what we would define as a tapestry today. Center created this non-traditional tapestry one year before the establishment of the Victorian Tapestry Workshop in 1976 - an event that was preceded by tapestry exhibitions at public and commercial galleries and the pioneering efforts of independent artist-weavers, particularly in New South Wales.