UNWRAPPING VANESSA: Fiber Memory Art by Vanessa Johnson

February 11, 2017 to March 25, 2017


Unwrapping Vanessa, by Syracuse fiber artist and storyteller Vanessa Johnson, highlighted a new body of work that honors the voices of women and girls who continue to influence the artist’s life, and speaks to her own transnational experience through the women who inspire her.

Vanessa is a Griot, a writer, a playwright, an actor, a fiber artist, a museum consultant, a community activist, a historian, and an educator.

“I am a quilt of all the Women and Girls that I have met on my life journey; the telling of their struggles, triumphs, and defeats. I learned who I was though their testimonies, and used their stories to develop how I fought my own battles in creating an Identity as a Woman of African Descent living in the United States. These stories shaped my definition of Social Justice, and influenced my own activism. Without these Voices, these Stories, I would not be who I am today.” – Vanessa Johnson


This project was made possible with funds from the Decentralization Program, a regrant program of the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature and administered by CNY Arts.


Mary Bronner, Margrit Diehl, Lynn Fallon & Greg Daily,
Therese Deegan, Sam Gruber & Zoe Meighan, Ann Jamison,
Bruce & Nancy McCoy, Harvey & Dorothy Pearl,
Maggie & Roger Reid, Ellen Schwartz, Mary Slechta,
Gail Sustare and Carmen Viviano-Crafts