Lonning began weaving baskets soon after earning a BFA in ceramics and textiles. In college she developed nurtured) an interesting patterns and complex weaving techniques, though many of her vessel forms still reflect her love of ceramics. Basketry became the natural union of two passions.
The colorful baskets are woven of artist-dyed Rattan using commercial, water fast dyes. The techniques used in all her baskets are multi-element twining to achieve vertical and spiral patterns and a form of tapestry weaging to get patches of contrasting color. The textural surfaces are achieved by the artist’s own “hairy” technique where 100s of short pieces of reed are woven into the walls of the basket.
Three years ago Lonning began experimenting with a locally gathered, invasive vine akebia. Depending on age and the time of collection, the vines vary in a wide range of colors. Some of the strands have been boiled and stripped of its bark to get a nearly white color.
Encaustic medium (beeswax and damar resin) is applied to strengthen, protect and add substance to the finished baskets.
Akebia was brought to the USA from the Far East for its decorative uses. In the years since, it has become an invasive vine, taking over forest floors and smothering other plants. I discovered akebia by tripping over it in the woods. It is a great material to work with due to its colors, strength and uniform diameter.
By the artist
The Art of Basketry,
by Kari Lønning 2000
132 pages, soft cover
AKEBIA, FROM INVASIVE VINE TO FINE ART
by Kari Lønning 2018
22 pages, soft cover, self published
Inspired by Color
by Kari Lønning 2016
26 pages, soft cover, self published