While looking for some local art to do a story on, I stumbled onto Eli Torres, who is majoring in art at MUM university in Fairfield, Iowa. He switched his major from sustainable living to art and I think he's definitely found where he should be. Eli is blending east and west in his work, silkscreening biodegradeable rice paste in a honeycomb pattern onto long swaths of muslin hung horizontally along his work space. He then paints using homemade natural dyes made from black beans, berries, tumeric, and other natural materials. The rice paste acts as a masking agent to keep parts of the muslin white and is washed out after the dye has been completely applied. The resulting bolts of hand dyed cloth are made in keeping with the principles of sustainable living that Eli learned in his previous major. There's a fascinating personal story and unique conceptual ground this guy stands on - along with a unique blend of techniques..
This pattern is used to silkscreen rice paste onto muslin before painting is begun. After the painting is done, the rice paste is simply washed off, leaving this pattern in white..
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