Before tossing an empty cigar box, Patricia Feiwel wants you to remember.
Feiwel, an Upper West Side textile artist, recently began creating framed “fabric collages” and free-standing boxes with biographic significance. She said it all started when her sister, who worked at Scholastic at the time, asked her to make a 40th birthday box for J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter series.
“A box is a great item for remembrance,” she said, explaining that it’s not only a piece of art, but something that’s useful as well.
Feiwel, who earned a BFA at Carnegie Mellon University, has been designing textiles for more than 25 years, creating custom lines for high-end retailers like Barney’s and Bendels. For those interested in her newest endeavor, she suggests keeping an eye out for interesting items that might work in a three-dimensional collage format.
“You need to look at the world and think of things out of context that you can use in your boxes,” she said. “The best boxes are the ones that put different and unusual things together.”
To learn more about this three-dimensional approach to collage, check out Feiwel’s upcoming class at the JCC, “Box Art: Collage Your Treasures.” The class aims to help participants combine textures and colors to tell a story with personal items through the form of a cigar box.
Feiwel said she picked the JCC as a venue because she wanted to share her art with her neighborhood.
“I love this neighborhood,” she said. “I really believe that this neighborhood has a particular spirit, and it’s the kind of spirit that would enjoy this kind of art.”
April 25, Jewish Community Center, 334 Amsterdam Ave. (at 76th St.), 646-505-5708; 1 to 5 p.m., $120 (also May 27).
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