Oral history interview with Joyce Marquess Carey, 2002 June 16
Carey, Joyce Marquess, 1936-
Adamson, Glenn, 1972-
University of Wisconsin--Madison
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America
Place of publication, production, or execution:
Transcript: 76 pages
Originally recorded on 2 sound discs. Reformatted in 2010 as 4 digital wav files. Duration is 2 hr., 51 min.
Access Note / Rights:
Transcript available on the Archives of American Art website.
An interview of Joyce Marquess Carey conducted 2002 June 16, by Glenn Adamson, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, at Carey's home, in Madison, Wisconsin.
Carey speaks of growing up in Redding, California; her widowed mother working to support Carey and herself; her "lonesome" childhood and her eagerness to leave Redding to attend the University of California at Berkeley; majoring in English; meeting her husband Harlan (Mark) Marquess in her senior year at Berkeley and marrying him; dropping out of college; regretting her marriage; her life as a housewife and mother in the late 1950s and 1960s; moving to Madison, Wisconsin, for her husband's job as a Russian teacher; taking weaving classes with Larry Edman at the University of Wisconsin-Madison; and meeting fiber artist Claire Zeisler on a field trip to Chicago. Carey discusses experimentation in her work and "stretching the limits of the technique" in Edman's class; receiving her undergraduate degree in textile arts in 1971; working with a computer-driven Dobby Loom; studying with Ruth Gao and Jim Peters at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee for her MFA in the early 1970s; teaching weaving at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, with a focus on technical and design skills; writing articles on the technical aspects of fiber art for "Fiber Arts," "Weaver's Journal," "Shuttle, Spindle, & Dye Pot," and other periodicals; exhibiting with the Wisconsin Designer Craftsmen in the 1970s; participating in the Quilt National Show in 1979; receiving a five-year development grant from the University of Wisconsin and quitting her teaching job; using "systematic" weaving methods in quilting; her involvement with galleries such as the Connell/Great American Gallery in Atlanta, Georgia; working with art consultants; the difference between private and corporate commissions; her use of bright colors and various fabrics; her use of tools and technology including an industrial sewing machine and computer programs such as Photoshop; her second marriage to Phil Carey in 1980 after her divorce to Marquess in the mid-1970s; and the "ephemeral" qualities in art. She considers herself a "collager," assembling fabrics and "embellishments." She also discusses her involvement with the Studio Art Quilt Associates and in the Art Quilt Network; and her piece, "Blue Ribbon," in the collection of the American Craft Museum. Carey recalls Camille Cook, Lia Cook, Martha Connell, Hillary Fletcher, Ted Hallman, Pat Mansfield, Ursula Ilse-Neuman, Yvonne Porcella, [Laurence] Rathsack, Victor Vasarely, and others.
Quotes and excerpts must be cited as follows: Oral history interview with Joyce Marquess Carey, 2002 June 16. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Transcript available online.
Funding for this interview was provided by the Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America. Funding for the digital preservation of this interview was provided by a grant from the Save America's Treasures Program of the National Park Service.
Joyce Marquess Carey (1936- ) is a quilt maker from Madison, Wisconsin. Glenn Adamson is an art historian.
This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and administrators.
Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, 750 9th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001