Robin Originals Creative Knits

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Meet the Artist


  • About This Artist

    Since 1984, award-winning artist Robin Bergman/Robin Originals hand-loom knits pieces in luxurious natural fibers inspired by vintage and antique textiles, art and nature. With an MFA in painting from MICA and experience as a textile conservator at the Gardner Museum in Boston, her work has appeared in Ornament, American Craft, Surface Design Journal, Fiber Art Now, The Fiberarts Book of Wearable Art, several films, shows, galleries, boutiques and museum shops.

  • Q&A With This Artist

    A: Loom knitting is a manual process using a knitting machine, simultaneously creating fabric, patterning and shaping. Emphasis on surface design, unusual for knits, treats the surface more like a canvas, experimenting with juxtaposition of color, texture, pattern and scale—in effect, painting with yarns. Shaping is deceptively simple using short rowing and subtle detail to achieve total integration of the pieces with the graphic and painterly surface, allowing the wearer to become the artwork.

    A: Knits are unique in the way that they transcend conventional boundaries and defy the usual boundaries of style, simultaneously as objects of art and of utility, traditional or modern, comfortable yet elegant. They can appeal to multiple senses, providing sophisticated visual and tactile pleasure even while offering simple warmth and comfort. By creating my own knit fabric and garments, I can be innovative and personal while I carry on an ancient and life-affirming tradition.

    A: I treat of my pieces more like painting, incorporating lots of color, texture, pattern, scale, and details into each piece. “The runway did not do Robin Bergman’s line justice. Her pointillism like knitting becomes even more fascinating when touched and seen up close. Her craftsmanship [is] raised to the level of couture in an area that defies the very category. Her use of color and texture has become her hallmark.” -Robert Rowe, Maverick Magazine, Fall ’93.

    A: People tell me my pieces look like paintings; there’s more complexity than in conventional knits. I strive for that. I look at everything. I look at what people are making in all fields for inspiration. I love color and love to make colors vibrate. I can make any two colors work together if their shades and values are just right. I love how dark and light, negative and positive flow together. I try for a sense of joie de vivre and exuberance in my pieces that we need more of.

    A: As a child, I absorbed my dad’s love of subtle tones and modern design and my mom’s love of vibrant colors, folk art and antiques. She and my grandmother taught me to knit. Surrounded by art and supplies, I dabbled in all mediums, but always ran home to sew and knit. Painting under Grace Hartigan for an MFA, I was urged to bring textiles into the studio. Later, working as a textile conservator, I learned the technical aspects of fiber. All of these influences have contributed to shaping my art.



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