Hi there, I’m Els.
Born on the 10th of March 1960 in Hasselt.
After my education at the Academy for Fine Arts in Leuven I’ve remained actively involved with art in a number of forms. Then, around 2003, I first came into contact with the ancient art of felting after following a basic course at the cultural center in Leopoldsburg.
I got the hang of the basics fairly quickly and started creating my first scarves. In the following years there was a lot of experimentation with various techniques and forms like hats, bags, jewelry and other objects. In 2005, I took the step to exhibit my work for the first time at a small art fair at “het Molenhuis” in my hometown Eksel.
Numerous art fairs and exhibitions have passed by since that first time. Returning venues include the yearly art fair in Ootmarsum (NL) and “Handgemarkt” in Genk. Some noteworthy exhibitions include: “Internationale textielkunstbiënale 2017” in Haacht, the “Korea Bojagi Forum 2018” in Seoul, South Korea and “Zomer vol kunst 2019” in Nieuwpoort. Since the middle of 2018 you can also find my scarves in jewelry designer Sofie Vanoosthuyses shop at the Vismarkt in Leuven.
For the last couple of years I’ve focused on nuno felting, a technique developed around 1992 by Polly Stirling, a fiber artist based in New South Wales, Australia. The name stems from the Japanese word nuno, meaning fabric. This technique consists of binding loose fibers, usually wool, to a pure fabric like silk gauze, creating a lightweight felt. I apply nuno felting to fine merino wool and chiffon silk to create my scarves. Depending on how inspiration strikes me, I incorporate other materials as well such as silk string, lace, fibers of all sorts and other kinds of wool like mohair, wensleydale, …
Every scarf starts out the same: white wool and white silk. The coloring I do myself. Sometimes I’ll process the wool into a thin pre felt from which shapes are cut out and then felted into the silk. Other times I’ll apply the wool directly to the silk and felt it in. I find inspiration in the little things: a certain color combination in an image, a pattern in nature, …
I hope the images on this site will show you what I mean. If you’d like to see my work in person you can find out where I’m exhibiting next on the events page. Also, feel free to leave a comment in my guestbook or contact me by e-mail.