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Thankful Generations: Heroes Found

Thankful Generations: Heroes Found

It's always a joy to see bead weaving on the gallery scene, but we are thrilled to share about Maureen Kenney's gallery exhibition for her Thankful Generations bead weaving project. It is called "Thankful Generations: Heroes Found" and will be displayed at the Cartwright Gallery in the Doss Center in Weatherford, TX through January. If you are in the area this is a must see! 

You can learn more about the project here and read more from Maureen below! 

Project Background 

When I turned 50, I made an active decision to create something that would leverage my interests and talents to inspire others, and hopefully something no one had ever done before.  Fifty is a big milestone and I didn't want to let it pass without doing something equally monumental! I combined my interest in World War II with my talent for beading, thus the idea for the Thankful Generations™ project was born.  

Ten years later, I'm proud of what the project represents, which is my expression of gratitude. It honors those who have served or are serving currently in the military, as well as their families.  Having grown up in an Air Force family, I understand the sacrifices our military members and their families make to secure the freedoms we enjoy. 

Most specifically my inaugural exhibition focuses on the Greatest Generation from WWII. Like many, I find expression through my artwork, though my way of saying thanks is different than most. By creating beaded tapestries of real people who served in the military or in other ways served our country, with every bead I pick up on my needle I express my personal thanks. I capture that moment in time in a format that I hope makes people pause, and maybe reflect and discuss what they think.  That’s what the Thankful Generations project is intended to do.  

My journey with Mirrix Looms:

The start of this project in 2013 coincides with the purchase of my first Mirrix Loom, the 12” Little Guy. The first tapestry is based on a National Archives photograph from 1944 of Marines in Saipan (127-GR-113-83414), Marine in Saipan. This loom is the workhorse of my project, used for 26 out of 35 total WWII tapestries.

 I then jumped in size to the 32” Joni loom for some larger tapestries, and my romantic nature couldn’t resist building two tapestries side-by-side for a WWII era couple: Anna Mae who served as a real-life Rosie the Riveter and her Navy husband, Doc.

There are also three mini-portraits I experimented with on my 8” Lani. To support my thirst for bead weaving, I also own the Saffron loom, Chloe loom and a Loreli mini-loom. Perhaps there are more in my future?