By Diana Cavagnaro
The Mingei International Museum is currently exhibiting a fabulous exhibit on hats made from paper bags. The exhibit is called “FOLD, TWIST, TIE” and was created by the artist moses. Barbara Hanson Forsyth curated the exhibit.
Each piece is an amazing sculptural work of art besides being a wearable hat. Up to now, paper bags have just been a functional item for holding our lunch or groceries. Viewers of the exhibit will be enthralled and wonder how he created the marvelous pieces. moses was a self-taught artist who lived in Hawaii. He taught workshops to hundreds of children on the big island along with workshops for adults.
Mingei’s first moses exhibition was in 2001 called “Crowning Glory.” moses felt he was given “the paper bag hat assignment.” In a period of 10 years, he made more than 250 hats.
One of my favorites in the exhibit is a large chess board with paper bag hats as the chess pieces. Some of names were the island king, pad-bag queen, and bamboo knight. These pieces are brilliantly created and very timeless. The hats are made with a variety of techniques such as folding, twisting and tying. moses made some of the paper bags look like other materials such as leather, flannel and straw. They are whimsical, regal and humorous— capturing many moods. Each hat is given a name such as anthurium, voltaire, and siddartha.
The exhibit also includes various pictures, letters and magazine articles written about moses. It even has instructions on how to make a bag hat. There is also a media room in the library where you can watch a video on moses. On the main floor there is a table set up so visitors can make their own hat then pose in front of a mirror.
The Mingei Museum also held a Coffee & Conversation lecture, “Hold Onto Your Hat!” in conjunction with this exhibit which was held in the Frances Hamilton White Art Library. As a master milliner, I spoke to a sold out crowd about my 30+ years in the millinery business. I discussed the many ways that hats and embellishments are made in the hat business.
“FOLD, TWIST, TIE” runs through Oct. 2, 2022. The hours are Saturday through Wednesday10 a.m.-5 p.m., and Thursday and Friday 10 a.m.-8 p.m. For more information visit: mingei.org.
“Fold, Twist, Tie” This is a paper bag hat exhibit by moses at the Mingei International Museum in Balboa Park. Open 1 0 a.m.-5 p.m. on Saturday-Wednesday and 10 a.m.-8 p.m. on Thursday-Friday. April 8-October 2, 2022
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