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Gardening On A Loom:

New exhibit features floral-themed tapestries by Stephanie Hoppe

On November 7, from 5 to 8 pm, a First Friday Opening Celebration will take place at the Corner Gallery in Ukiah for a new exhibit titled “From a Weaver’s Garden.” The exhibit, which runs from November 6 through November 29th, features new tapestries and selected rugs by Ukiah designer-weaver Stephanie T. Hoppe. The celebration will include live music and special treats from Mendocino County's Wine, Beer and Mushroom Festival.

“Given the drought this year,” Hoppe explains, “I decided what gardening I did should be on my loom. I was already intrigued with a little iris plant that appeared in my yard a few years ago. The blossoms are rather nondescript, tan and pale violet, and last only a day or two. For me, the blossoms are brief instants of stillness that contrast in a design with the dynamic movement of the leaves, always stretching and twisting. Now I have woven a series of tapestries with basically the same leaves-and-two-flowers design, but in a variety of different weaving techniques and colors."

Hoppe creates tapestries and rugs in wool she dyes on a Navajo loom, in techniques learned through many years of researching historic and prehistoric Navajo, Pueblo, and Anasazi weaving. “This technology is rudimentary,” she observes. “My own hands and body become critical components. It is slow and requires close and constant attention. But it also yields the physical and spiritual rewards of all contemplative practices, as well as a sense of participating in and perpetuating ancient rhythms of work.”

Hoppe began weaving in the mid-1990s in the Mendocino College textile program. She has also studied with several master dyers, a Turkish kilim rug weaver, and the Bauhaus-trained Swiss tapestry weaver Silvia Heyden. She has been exhibiting and selling her tapestries and tapestry-woven wool rugs since 2001.

"From a Weaver's Garden" opens on November 6 and runs until November 29. For a virtual tour of this exhibit and other works, visit the artist's website at

The Corner Gallery is at 201 South State Street in Ukiah and is open Tuesday through Saturday from 11 am to 5 pm. Admission is free. For more information, go to or call 462-1400.

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