Textile artist Tamara Kostianovsky creates realistic elements from nature out of strips of fabric and discarded clothing. In her latest series, the artist forms severed tree stumps from pieces of her late father’s clothing, integrating his belongings into a landscape of layered, multi-colored logs. The works address the passing of time and allude to the body returning to the environment after death.
The project is inspired by the South American people of the Andes who believe that Mother Earth is embodied by the surrounding mountains. Kostianovsky translates this idea to placing clothing items into sculptures that represent the earth and its environment. She explains in an artist statement: “Fusing the shapes of severed tree stumps of different forms and sizes to a palette indicative of the insides of the body, [the series Tree Stumps] pays homage to the cultural heritage of the people of Latin America, while presenting an alternative way of thinking about our post-industrial relationship to nature.”
Kostianovsky became entranced with the body while working at a surgeon’s office during her adolescence. She continues to make work that examines muscle and bone, often in other species such as livestock or whales. You can take a look inside the artist’s studio by visiting her Instagram.