Opening Reception Set For Friday For Fiber Artist Maria Jonsson’s Exhibit At Los Alamos Co-Op Market

Fiber artist Maria Jonsson with some of her weavings at the Los Alamos Co-Op Market where an exhibit opening is slated from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday. Courtesy photo

A recycled linen wool felt wall hanging created by fiber artist Maria Jonsson. Courtesy photo


What do you call a piece of art that is woven from discarded film strips, or repurposed scraps of metal? Fiber artist and Los Alamos resident Maria Jonsson calls them “woven paintings,” and they are showcased this month in the Los Alamos Co-op Café. The community is invited to the art opening Friday, March 31 from 4-6 at the Co-op.

Maria is a working archaeologist as well as an artist. As a student in Sigtuna, Sweden in the 1980s, she studied hand-weaving, felting, embroidery, and other fiber arts. Maria then went on to receive a BFA and MA in Studio Art Fiber/Fabrics at Northern Illinois University, and to pursue a parallel career as an archaeologist after moving to New Mexico in the 1990s.

“When I was in art school in the US, we were encouraged to experiment with unusual materials. I’ve done that, and I’ve settled on materials that interest me,” she says. “Recycling is a big theme in my work, using things that would normally be cast away.” Hence her “New Mexico film series” of weavings that incorporate pieces of film; the film strips are part of Maria’s stash of interesting materials that get a second life by becoming part of an artwork.

Along with artistic weavings, Maria weaves more practical items such as runners and small rugs. She also knits and crochets, but “I always go back to the loom.” Maria is a board member at the Española Valley Fiber Arts Center, headquartered in Española. The Center, currently open Thursdays-Saturdays, is a nonprofit with a fiber arts supply store, looms for member use, fiber arts classes for the general public, and various fiber events and fairs throughout the year that showcase local artists.

Maria Jonsson’s woven paintings will be up at the Co-op for a month, and she will be on hand at the Co-op to answer questions about her artwork and her artistic process Friday during the art opening.

Food will be available for purchase at the Co-op’s deli hot bar. Friday’s menu features lemon garlic salmon, chicken penne pasta, roasted rosemary potatoes, broccoli and Brussels sprouts, and green curry tofu with veggies. Rice and a choice of soup are also available. Several items are gluten-free and/or vegetarian-friendly.

The Los Alamos Co-op serves meat and vegetarian breakfast burritos Monday-Saturday from 8 am, Sunday brunch, and delicious, healthy lunch food daily at the hot bar and salad bar until 4pm. “The Los Alamos Cooperative Market: The Heart of the Community at the Edge of Town”.