Artwalk 2016 Location: Lindsey Office Furnishings: 2223 1st Avenue North
Miriam Norris Omura has a BFA in Fiber and Material Studies from the Cleveland Institute of Art and an MA in History/Art History from Cleveland State University. Born to English and English/Sri Lankan parents, and having immigrated to the US when she was a child, she developed an interest in exploring overlaps and intersections of different cultures and religions. Miriam is intrigued by the role of Catholic saints within both Christian and non-Christian cultures, seeing this second relationship in terms of how aspects of Catholicism can become imposed upon another culture or religion. Many of her interests stem from her experiences living in a Jesuit mission on an Indian reservation and the time she spent with practitioners of both Yoruba and Santeria. Seemingly unrelated themes become tied into the imagery and subjects of her artwork. Hand-woven silk and cotton fabrics that sometimes include dye-painted warps form the base layer of her mixed media images that are heavily embroidered and include found stamps and photographs, acrylic paint, and beads. These layers of materials echo the strange layering and mixing of ideas that Miriam explores in her work.