By Seth Combs, Contributor, San Diego Union Tribune
Textile artist Evan Tyler, in residency at Art Produce in North Park, found his artistic calling on a loom
Evan Tyler knew he was onto something. He’d been weaving and dyeing his own brand of textile-based art and was beginning to feel he was on the “right path” with his art, but he couldn’t help but feel he had one thing holding him back: He needed a better frame loom.
“This is the biggest type of weaving I could do at the time,” says Tyler, pointing to one of his earlier works in the studio space he’s currently working in at Art Produce, an art and performance space in North Park. “I was only making smaller pieces, but I wanted to do bigger pieces. I was watching all these videos and I saw a loom in a documentary and immediately started looking everywhere online.”
Still, new quality looms can cost thousands of dollars, and with pandemic demand and a backlogged supply chain, he knew his chances of finding one would be tough. He eventually found someone selling a frame loom online in September 2020, but it was located in Ventura.
“I was like, ‘How am I going to get this?’” recalls Tyler. “My mom, who I hadn’t seen in months because of the pandemic, told me, ‘If you really want it, I’ll pick it up and drive it down for you.’ It was in bad shape, but I cleaned it up and was so happy.”
Nearly two years after Tyler found that loom, he’s now set up at Art Produce, where he just started an artist residency. He’s sitting in a quaint studio space called the Cooler Room, where he will be creating some new pieces and have an open studio event on Aug. 6. On the wall are some of his woven pieces, vibrantly colored and more abstract in nature even while adhering to the intricate roots of the art form.