Beth Ross Johnson

Asheville, NC | Exhibiting Since 1981

Beth Ross Johnson began weaving in 1970, learning at first from a family friend. She later studied at Colonial Williamsburg with students of Norman Kennedy and attended many sessions at Penland. In the mid seventies she became enamored of kasuri, the Japanese ikat techniques used in folk textiles. Initially she learned from books and then took a workshop with Jun Tomita. In 1985 she spent three months in Japan studying with weaver Takayuki Hongo. She began working with Norman Kennedy at the John C. Campbell Folk School, and returned to Japan in 2000 for a year to teach English. She was able to work again at with Hongo and also studied sakiori (silk rag weaving) with Nonaka Hiromi. She has an MA in fibers from Western Carolina University where she is a visiting instructor in weaving and art history, and she has completed a MFA in textiles at Georgia State where she also teaches weaving. The “Crests” series grew from a series of pieces she did on waves. At some point she realized that the mountains were in motion the same way that waves were, just slowed down to geological time. She tries to present the movement of these mountains (mostly Appalachian) affected by light and season.