Regular readers of this blog will know that I love embroidery. I love it because it’s so versatile, you can embroider magazine pages , adverts, paintings and even tennis rackets . Different effects can be created with the stitches; they can be tight and regular, or loose and wavy, refined or bohemian in style. Victoria Villasana uses a mixture, her stitches vary in length from long graphic lines to short little tacks. She leaves some strands of yarn hanging down, allowing them to stretch past the outlines of the images; others she leaves neat and tidy, the loose ends tucked away behind the piece.
Villasana embroiders monochrome portraits of people, both famous and unknown. She uses the threads to add colours – for the most part completely made up; in the original image the person could be wearing a plain black t-shirt, which Villasana transforms with multicoloured stripes. Or she bounces off the patterns already found in their clothes, bringing them to life by making them three dimensional.
Her work is playful and free, she manipulates the images and enhances their lightness, or in the case of ‘Free Minds Free Society’ she counterbalances the serious tone. Villasana has also branched out into street art; sticking her embroidered images onto lamp posts and experimenting on a larger scale by collaborating with graffiti artist Zabou, adding her signature style to black and white murals. In this sense, Villasana vandalises these photographs with her needle and thread.
All images taken from Villasana’s website, where you can find more of her work: https://victoriavillasana.com/