Lines and Colors art blog

Cayce Zavaglia

Cayce Zavaglia
Cayce Zavaglia creates her portraits in a novel variation on the time honored traditions of tapestry, using crewel embroidery wool in a method in which the direction of the threads are not blended into a uniform pattern, but given direction within the creation of the form — like brushstrokes, producing a much more “painterly” (“threaderly”?) surface.

Zavaglia was trained as a painter and in her statement indicates that she still thinks of herself as a painter, simply working with a different medium.

The images on her site, once you click through to the individual works, are supplemented with close up crops in which you can better see the directional and dimensional qualities of the threadwork.

In addition, some of the works are displayed as they look from the reverse of the surface, with a feeling of abstracted underlying form and a decidedly different direction and texture to the threads.

[Via High-Fructose by way of Dan van Bentheuysen: @vanbenth]


5 responses to “Cayce Zavaglia”

  1. Susanne E. Avatar
    Susanne E.

    Fascinating work! I have never seen anything like it. Thanks for sharing.


  2. That’s creative. Been a while since I’ve seen someone use a medium like this. Big thanks for sharing this!

  3. Fascinating and looks very ambitious.
    What I really like is how great they stand as portraits, with subtle facial expressions, instead of simply pictures of people. That has to be tough to do and I’ll bet much harder to reverse than paint if you are not happy with it at any stage. Her training as a painter no doubt.

  4. beautiful !!!! I am working with beads but would love to try this method as currently i leave the faces. I also dont know how to do the hair ?
    would appreciate some help

    1. Denise,

      Cayce Zavaglia is unlikely to see your comment here. You can try contacting her through her own website: