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Diane Krys :: Q&A with a Fibre Artist

Updated: Nov 8, 2021

Diane Krys is an Edmonton based textile artist, who uses rug hooking, felting, knitting, and crocheting to create textile art, sculpture and furnishings. All her pieces are hand-made and unique. Her work is informed by textile art traditions and history but at the same time, she considers herself “an explorer and her “studio as a fibre laboratory.”

We are thrilled Diane agreed to do this interview. Her work is beautiful and completely one-of-a-kind.

How did you discover felt making? Was it love at first sight?

My first foray into the world of textiles was with traditional rug hooking, however, when I saw a local felter’s work I swooned and knew I had to learn how to felt too. It was love at first sight and the love affair is still going strong!

Music or no music while you work ? If so what kind of music?

I listen to music while I work, unless of course, I’m hooked on a tv series, in which case, I bring some of my work from my basement studio into the tv room for an episode marathon. I have a diverse music library and like to mix new finds and classic favourites into my playlists. A few artists I’m listening to as I type this are: Neutral Milk Hotel, Jose Gonzalez, Lucinda Williams.

Where do you find inspiration?

I can find inspiration in everything from the worn paint in an old farm house to an art gallery presentation, however, I’m particularity inspired by Outsider and Folk Art. I’m moved by these raw, honest and completely idiosyncratic kinds of expression. I think there’s an admirable kind of originality that comes from work produced without the influence of formal training.

Do you teach? If so what do you enjoy about that?

I’ve had the pleasure of teaching in both Canada and the United States by invitation and for juried conferences and programs. My greatest reward and joy lives in those moments when I can see students expanding on an idea or technique I’ve shared to create something new and unique to them.

Who is your favourite artist? This can be another fibre artist or just any artist you admire.

I don’t have just one! I can say Michael Brennand-Wood is one of my favs. He’s taken his textile work to completely new arenas during his 40 plus year career and he’s still pushing boundaries with his new work.

Do you have your early work?

I’m glad to have my first pieces of textile and fibre work as they give me a tangible history of my artistic growth. Lately, I’ve been looking at some of my early work and finding new ideas hidden in those naïve baby steps like fallow seeds waiting for more experience to blossom.

Do you have an upcoming exhibition?

I’m very excited to have my work included in Migration, the upcoming exhibit held in conjunction with the Canadian Felt Symposium (2016) in Penticton. I’m especially delighted to have it exhibited it in a felt-centric, felt obsessed context for the first time!

What are you working on now?

In the studio I’m developing techniques and ideas for a new body of work with larger scale pieces.

Professionally, I’m working on a year long art collaboration to design and facilitate the making of a public art piece. It’s been a very rewarding experience thus far and I’m looking forward to seeing the completed piece by the end of 2016.

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