Wildflower Design Studios

Bemidji, Minnesota

Shannon Lucas-Westrum

Wildflower Design Studio

For me, basket weaving is an exercise in art, craft, tradition, practicality, and design. When I began weaving, it was to learn a “useful” craft. I quickly bored with useful and started experimenting. Now, every single piece I design is a fusion of traditional technique and contemporary shape or usage. I am creating an almost seamless flow from natural to man made.

Typically, I begin each piece by choosing my focal element, then balancing, turning, sanding, and flipping, until I can visualize my finished shape. I dye the colors I’m going to use and create a basic frame. From there, I continue to form the vessel and add color and texture.

I love pieces that showcase the shape and personality of a focal point, it creates such life within itself. The key to any piece is to let it tell you the shape it wants to take – and then to know when to finish!

The best way to describe my weaving is as Art Basketry. Each piece is designed to be organic and free flowing. I take my inspiration in the form of a focal point – a handle, antler, piece of driftwood, and sometimes a handful of glass beads, and create my shape to include and compliment that inspiration. Ribbed baskets are amazingly versatile in form and suitability to flowing curves, while stake and strand is my preference when I am looking for more geometric shapes. My work ranges from useful everyday baskets to sculptural wall art. Working primarily in rattan, I dye my own reed into a muted palette of natural colors. The color is used to highlight shape and sometimes accent character in my focal pieces. My finished work is a reflection of the colors and textures abundant in northern Minnesota. Training through this fellowship will expand my knowledge in working with, cultivating, and harvesting my own raw materials, therefore allowing a more depth and textures to my work.

My work is primarily in rattan, willow and bark, with organic elements of deer antler, driftwood or other found materials.

Wildflower Design Studios

Shannon Lucas-Westrum
Bemidji Minnesota 56619
Phone: 218.556.5907
Email: shannonwestrum@gmail.com
Website: Shannon Lucas-Westrum

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