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Artist Statement

My intent is to create art about the spirit of the earth. I believe that as humans we live here on this planet to cherish it, to learn and to love one another. The beauty that surrounds us, even in the simple things, is amazing. To capture, and for my viewers to feel, a moment of nature’s essence and the gift of life is my goal. I am inspired everyday by nature in my surroundings.

Much of my current work is about water because I have always been drawn to it. Water, the giver of life, is powerful, peaceful, magical and mystical. There is another world under the sea. I love its many moods and colors. I love the way it feels and sounds.

Everything is made of light. It is the messenger of life and knowledge of all things. I am fascinated by the interaction of light and earth’s elements. Light passes thru water in a brilliant display of rays. In shallow water it forms patterns on the sandy floor. Light reflects off the splash of a wave or the gentle ripple of a quiet pond. It passes thru the dancing leaves of the trees. The sky is aglow with light and color and fire is pure light itself.

To create this interaction of color and light I paint thickened dye on silk and silk organza. Resists of various types preserve the white light. The layering of fabrics, as well as the many layers of color creates a feeling of depth. Working with my hands and enjoying the process is as important to me as the piece itself. And then when a piece is complete I love to sit back and see what mysteries it holds.


Karen Turckes is a full time fiber artist and teacher. She has worked with textiles all of her life and is a graduate of the Clothing and Textiles program at Michigan State University as well as the Art Cloth Mastery Program in San Antonio, Texas. She dyes her own cloth and adds layers of depth to the fabric using paint, soy wax, fabric manipulations and other surface design techniques. Turckes is the owner of Windberry Studio, a private studio in Michigan where she makes and sells hand dyed fabrics and art cloth. Her art work has been exhibited nationally.

Her love of the art has led to teaching dyeing and surface design classes. For quilters she teaches free motion stitching, appliqué and advanced piecing. Publications include a Free Motion Quilting pattern book and Design your own Fat Quarter Landscape pattern.


Twelve Voices from One, Work from the graduates of the Art Cloth Mastery Program 2010. Radius Gallery. San Antonio, TX Power Center Show. Ann Arbor Fiber Arts guild. Ann Arbor, MI

Teaching Experience
2011: Hand Dyeing Fabric. Quilting Unlimited. Ann Arbor, MI.
2011: Hand Dyeing Fabric. Windberry Studio. Milford, MI.
2005-Current: Free Motion Quilting. Sandy’s Make It Sew. Livonia, MI and Monarch Quilts. Brighton, MI. and Quilting Unlimited. Ann Arbor, MI.

Art Cloth Mastery Program. Art Cloth Studios. Jane Dunnewold. San Antonio, TX.
Color Mixing for Dyers. Carol Soderlund. Quilting by the Lake Two. Syracuse, NY.
Water Based Resists: Jane Dunnewold. Pro-Chemical, Fall River, MA.
Trained Sewing Educator, Certification. Home Sewing Association, Washington DC.
Dyeing To Discharge: Carol Soderlund. Nancy Crow Barn. Baltimore, Ohio.
Retailing of Clothing and Textiles BS. Michigan State University. East Lansing, MI.

Professional Affiliations
Ann Arbor Fiber Arts Guild
Greater Ann Arbor Quilting Guild
Surface Design Association

Professional Experience, Publications, Awards
Design Your Own - Fat Quarter Landscape. Published by Windberry Studio Press.
Artist Uses Various Techniques to Dye Cloth by Jocelynn Brown. The Detroit News.
Judges Choice Award. First United Methodist Church Quilt Show. Dearborn, MI.
Owner of Windberry Studio. Specializing in Hand Dyed Fabrics. Milford, MI.
Free Motion Quilting. Published by Windberry Studio Press.
First Place and Best of Show. Michigan State Fair. Quilted Art Jacket. MI.


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