Alma R. Gómez
pine needle basket with lid
This body of work represents my interest in using natural plants and materials to create. I have resided in the pacific northwest for over thirty years and this has resulted in an appreciation for the Idaho landscape and in spending time outdoors in nature. After spending many years painting in my studio and especially after working on large and busy murals I began to yearn for a different kind of expression. I wanted to make work that was more personal and smaller. Ten years ago I spent some time with women Hopi potters from the Hopi Reservation in Arizona. I was so impressed with how these women made their gorgeous pottery. Everything they needed to make their work came from the landscape they lived in. Everything was natural from start to finish. This experience was profound to me and I began to think about how I could use my appreciation for the Idaho landscape in my work. This lead me on a new path and a new genre. I began weaving vessels, first with pine needles from the Ponderosa pine tree, and then gradually have began to use other materials such as juncus, willow and roots. This new form of expression is very exciting. Thus far the work has been small and personal. The act of weaving is primal and meditative and I feel a great sense of connection to the ancestors and to nature. In addition to the weaving there is the harvesting and preparation of the plant materials that brings added joy to the whole process of weaving.