Laurie RussellRepackaged: Plastic Bag Works

November 9-18, 2018

Sea Creature

With the ubiquitous plastic bags accumulated from grocery stores and other commercial establishments, Laurie Russell has developed a way to make wall reliefs, using yarn to sew the bags onto burlap stretched over a frame. The fact that the plastic bags have varying degrees of transparency allows her to combine colors in layers, thus enriching them, and to play with the text or the graphics on the bags. The bags, too, are fraught with contemporary content–as symbols of consumerism, eco-consciousness, and carbon footprinting.
Russell’s many influences include molas (the colorful fabric panels stitched by the Kuna Indian women of the San Blas Islands); African American patchwork, strip, and crazy quilts; the high-pile Finnish Rya rugs; the organic forms of Antoni Gaudí; aerial views of Peruvian croplands; stained glass windows; tile floors; and the humble potholder. These sources–remixed, rewoven, reimagined–converge in a body of work entitled Repackaged: Plastic Bag Works.
Visit Laurie’s site
Gallery Hours:
Fri  2 – 6pm
Sat – Sun 12 – 6pm
*Open on Thursday 12, 28th*
and by appointment
Free and open to the public.
To schedule a visit outside of regular hours, please email Colleen at

Founded in 1986, City Lore is New York City’s center for urban folk culture. With a mission to foster New York City – and America’s – living cultural heritage through education and public programs, City Lore encompasses a Lower East Side gallery space, performances, lectures, the People’s Hall of Fame, a POEMobile that projects poems onto walls and buildings, and programs throughout the five boroughs. We document, present, and advocate for New York City’s grassroots cultures to ensure their living legacy in stories and histories, places and traditions. We work in four cultural domains: urban folklore and history; preservation; arts education; and grassroots poetry traditions. In each, we seek to further cultural equity and model a better world with projects as dynamic and diverse as New York City itself.



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