Nigerian colors, memories inspire textile artist

Gerard Ortiz

BUT Initial, Coffee

Ordinarily, Rodriguez’s day starts early as she prepares to get her youngest little one to faculty. She can make espresso and drops her son off, then zips downtown and gets to her studio all over 8:30. Rodriguez strategies the studio like she would any get the job done working day. She commences at her laptop or computer, answering email messages. She tweaks the templates she is performing on for a mural venture at West Dayton’s cooperative grocery retail outlet, Gem Metropolis Marketplace. This won’t be the to start with perform she has performed for Gem Town Marketplace, which opened its doors in 2019. The facade of the making has a geometric design produced by Rodriguez. The new mural is a collaboration amongst Rodriguez, fellow Dayton artists James Pate and Glenna Jennings, and Shayna McConville, who oversees Kettering’s Rosewood Arts Heart and brings community artwork to the Dayton region. Later on in the working day, . Rodriguez will fulfill with her mural collaborators at either the Gem Town Sector or at Pate’s gallery.

CHASING THE Light-weight

Rodriguez has been in this unique studio on West Very first Road for a calendar year. She moved studios from down the hall in look for of superior light. The studio is well-organized with tall wooden bookshelves full of supplies and fabric samples. Together a person window-lined wall sit 3 tidy stations set up for workshops that Rodriguez leads underneath the moniker StudioYay. The most latest workshop, developing a attractive mirror with a Do it yourself printed border, took put at the stop of June. Irrespective of her prolific output, she has self-doubt, just as any dedicated artist does. “If I do anything that’s not art, will individuals get turned off? If it’s craft? I enjoy Diy. When I listen to ‘artist’ with a cash ‘A,’ it can be daunting.”

I WANT IT TO Suggest Something

As the morning progresses, the desk perform needed to operate a compact organization wants to wait because Rodriguez has the urge to soar into a challenge. “Sometimes I want to execute on an strategy I have,” she claims. She is re-upholstering an old chair in her own fabric structure. “I really like refinishing a thing that previously exists, like the chair, alternatively than putting out additional stuff.” She is trying to period out of markets where she sells her personal products and solutions like pillows and totes. “I didn’t established out to make a products line. I do not want to direct with that,” she claims, “I want it to be anything anyone desires. I want it to mean anything to somebody.”

Local community Get the job done

To that stop, Rodriguez is now deep into collaborative group projects. In addition to her contributions to Gem City Industry, she also is effective with the nonprofit We Treatment Arts, an organization that gives an inventive outlet to individuals with different disabilities and actual physical worries. Rodriguez has been teaching the “Production” class at We Care Arts for the earlier yr. Area organizations will request initiatives, and Rodriguez guides the artists, who are paid out for their attempts, to deliver the function. “This flower challenge has consumed my daily life.” She is speaking of an art set up she not too long ago finished as a collaboration between downtown’s Dayton Arcade, the arts fund Culture Will work, and We Care Arts. Rodriguez was commissioned to facilitate the manufacturing of a 24-foot wall of paper flowers with the assistance of her college students. It debuted in June at Summer Sector Working day at the Arcade.


Rodriguez collaborates not only on community perform but with person artists. At 11 she greets Dayton-dependent artist Erin Smith, who has arrived to continue painting Rodriguez’s portrait. The two will operate alongside one another by incorporating Rodriguez’s textiles onto the canvas, and now is the working day that Smith would make her choice of fabric. Rodriguez will sit for the portrait right up until it’s time to split for lunch.


Rodriguez lives about 5 minutes from her studio, and generally zips back and forth, stopping household for lunch. She enjoys to prepare dinner and enjoys procuring at impartial, international grocery suppliers for substances, including the Hillel industry on Wayne Avenue and La Michoacana on Troy Street in Dayton. About 3, Rodriguez wraps up what she is doing the job on and leaves the studio to decide on up just one or a lot more of her small children. She is usually joined again at the studio by her youngsters, which include her son, an artist and modern graduate of Stivers School for the Arts. He will be pursuing industrial art in college and enjoys building his have canvas frames in his mother’s studio. Rodriguez’s daughter, who experiments in upstate New York, is house for the summer and enjoys coming to the studio to sew.


Rodriguez and co. head residence for evening meal. She cooks a great deal and enjoys making variants on Dominican fried rice, just one of her husband’s favorites. She will use the elements she picked up at the community marketplaces to recreate dishes at property, like falafel or Thai meals. At times, inspiration strikes once again and Rodriguez heads back to the studio immediately after evening meal for one particular or two far more hrs, not heading property for the night right up until 11.

You can arrive at this writer at [email protected].

Yetunde Rodriguez produces modest-batch textile layouts, which are encouraged by the coloration combos of Nigerian art and individual memory. Contributed

Yetunde Rodriguez produces small-batch textile designs, which are inspired by the color combinations of Nigerian art and personal memory. Contributed

Yetunde Rodriguez makes compact-batch textile types, which are motivated by the color combos of Nigerian art and particular memory. Contributed

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