ORNAMENT Volume 36 No. 5

Lisa Anne Auerbach. Making Them Sweat
Ann Bonfoey Taylor. Fashion Independent
Shoe Obsession. A Potent Cultural and Commercial Phenomenon
Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show 2013
Daunis Fine Jewelry. Pushing the Design Envelope
Arabic Silver Jewelry. The Allure of the Traditional
Wearable Arts. Smithsonian Craft2Wear
Questions/Answers. Mary Schoeser
Artist Statement. Kelly Morgen
Museum News. Shanghai Museum of Glass


Long before yarn bombing and knit-ins became a thing, Lisa Anne Auerbach was knitting politically charged clothing, blankets and banners. Her “Body Count Mittens” of 2005 enumerated American military deaths in Iraq—a chilling spin on knitting for the troops. (She posted the pattern on her website in hopes that others would make them, widening the debate).


The remarkable collection celebrated in “Fashion Independent: The Original Style of Ann Bonfoey Taylor” belongs to the Phoenix Art Museum, which in 2011 presented the exhibition and published the accompanying catalog, curated and edited by Dennita Sewell, the museum’s Curator of Fashion Design.


My enthusiasm for footwear is not uncommon. I know numerous women and a couple of men who consider themselves shoe connoisseurs and who think of shoe shopping as a guilty pleasure. But after seeing "Shoe Obsession," an exhibition of designer women's shoes at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City, I realize that everyone I know, myself included, is strictly a garden-variety shoeaholic. There is a world of luxurious, over-the-top shoes out there that many of us never see, much less wear.


The Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show takes place within the Pennsylvania Convention Center; cozy and warm albeit in a very large space, it offers more than physical respite, but also sensual and spiritual. Imagine walking the carpeted aisles; peering into booths, perhaps brilliantly lit, at times more subdued, depending on the exhibitor’s taste. All the while, taking in a visual plethora, an ornate cornucopia of the senses—fine porcelain of mellow hues; jewelry, both delicate wireworks with minimal decoration, and sumptuous gemmed items of cobalt blues, opalescent sheens, and coruscant precious metals; lustrous wooden sculptures; subtly woven basketry—the sights go on and on.


After nearly thirty years working together, Patricia Daunis-Dunning and her husband, William Dunning, display the kind of comfortable familiarity and creative synergy that make for a great team. Seated in the front office of their three-story walk-up studio and showroom in the heart of Portland, Maine, they tell their shared story.


In 1960, when I was a graduate student at Columbia University in New York, I obtained a study grant to visit the Middle East for the first time. This area subsequently became my late husband’s and my area of professional specialization, over our thirty-year careers as United States diplomats. Toward the end of my initial visit, I traveled to Damascus, where I shopped for mementos for my family at a store in the Hamadiya Bazaar of the old city. Among the enormous array of Middle Eastern handicrafts on display, a wonderful bracelet caught my eye.