Mixed Media artist Bruce Stilwell produces technically meticulous fibre works with velvet and threads. Through his work, Stilwell explores the mathematical beauty that underpins the structure of our visual world.
Bruce Stilwell's work showcases the beauty that can come from a methodical and precise hand. To create a work, Stilwell embarks on the painstaking process of connecting points with thread, using the principles of concentric circles, parabolic curves and ellipses. The results transcend their geometric fundamentals becoming compelling images that invite closer inspection.
The choice of thread colour against the base board creates a sense of illumination across the forms. The shapes seem to hover and shine within their frame, giving them a luminescent presence.
In 2017 for the Nelson Light Festival Bruce created a monumental umbrella, called "The Mumbrella", The mother of all umbrellas. Six meters in diameter and constructed from laminated timber, plywood and a massive 10 kilometres of string.
This year and most recently he made the finals in the national Field days Number 8 Wire art awards with a giant 1300 mm Diameter wire "Kina". He used an impressive 750 meters of wire which was painstakingly cut, fitted and welded together. 1400 individual pieces in total. This creation can be currently viewed at the festival.
Bruce Stilwell was born in the small town of Otematata. He draws on a background as a carpenter and joiner, which no doubt provided him with a solid foundation in construction and design. He came to Fine Art later in life but found quick success with his unique style. Stilwell has been awarded a category prize at the Changing Threads Contemporary Fibre Art Awards, the Brendan Foot Signature Award at the New Zealand Art Show and the Aspiring Art Prize Award. He exhibits his work in select galleries around New Zealand and has seen work acquired by international clients.