It took more than four decades of wire lacemaking to create The Carriage of Lost Loves, a hanging sculpture measuring 16 feet long, 8.5 ft high and 7 feet wide. This luminous vehicle surprised and delighted visitors to the groundbreaking international contemporary lace art exhibition entitled "LACE, not lace: Contemporary Fiber Art from Lacemaking Techniques" curated by Devon Thein) September 2018 - January, 2019 in the Hunterdon Art Museum, Clinton, New Jersey.
Flanders, Belgium, is the birthplace of Lieve Jerger and also of the beautiful fiber art known as bobbin lace. It grew out of the abundant local flax crops that once served to create the linen sails for the ocean-faring vessels of centuries past. Linen gets stronger when wet. The finest flax fibers were created by soaking the flax in the river Lys (Leie) to dissolve the pectin and isolate the hairfine strands that were then spun into gossamer lace threads. Bobbin lace was made in convents and beguinages throughout Flanders.
Lieve adapted this ancient art form to work with copper wire of various gauges and create three dimensional sculptures.
Lieve's mother, Berthilda Vandoren, assembled a collection of antique Flemish Laces over her lifetime. It is the Spieghel Lace Collection that made Lieve devoted to this ancient art form and all its untapped potential.
Fine art fairytale limited edition of 3,000 copies. By Phil Yeh and Lieve Jerger. Spring 1998.
The Carriage of Lost Loves was conceived when the first window was completed: a solitary profile in a twenty-two inch square field of lace. An orbiting planet is her only travel companion. The pattern had come together in minutes. I had just secured my first one-pound spool of thirty gauge coated copper wire and was eager to apply the recent two-hour, crash-course in basic bobbin lace from my mother in Belgium to this brilliant copper filament. Working with wire gave a new dimension to the glorious art of Flemish bobbin lace. The durability and pliability of the wire was a revelation. I learned how to prevent kinks and breaks. It was in Long Beach, California, in 1977. I was looking forward to spending the rest of my life making lace with copper wire and building a luminous copper lace carriage.
The pictorial windows of the carriage grew out of deeply personal emotions. Some were feelings of joy and others were sad. Each window took between two and six months to complete. I learned more technique by using heavier wires, and made up stitches and patterns that can only be made with wire.
My confidence in taming the wires evolved as I built the walls around the windows and kept my grandmother’s oak bobbins polished with constant handling.
Ultimately, the most labor-intensive parts of the carriage are the massive wheels, built in several layers around steel interior rims. The words on the tread are mounted so that they are legible on the ground wherever the carriage has rolled through: Lost Love Is Never Lost.
Long stretches of time passed without visible progress on the work, but the carriage was always there for me at dreamtime as a trusted friend. I could close my eyes any time and visualize the next steps in great detail. Making a carriage made me feel in control, even in the most challenging times.
I can not fully explain what motivated me forty-five years ago. Looking back today, I realize that the carriage contains all my love and joy for life, including its heartaches and sorrows
1963 - 1968 Sint Ludgardis School, Antwerp, Belgium.
1868 - 1971 Sint Ignatius University, Antwerp, Belgium
Linguistics - Germanic Languages and Literature
Unitarian Universalist Church, Long Beach, CA.
Westweek at Pacific Design Center in Santa Monica, CA
Artists at Work in Crafts Media, A Celebration of Process
February 1981 through 1986
Angels Gate Cultural Center, San Pedro, CA
Lace Studio Open House
Studio Artists Gallery Exhibits
IOLI Lace Convention at LAX Hilton
Los Angeles, CA
Open Studio: first exhibit of Carriage with wheels
in Casas Grandes, CHIH, Mexico.
Lace, Not Lace: Contemporary Fiber Art from Lacemaking Techniques
(curated by Devon Thein) September 23, 2018 in the Hunterdon Art Museum, Clinton, New Jersey.
1984 The First Dolores Roche Memorial Prize for Excellence in Traditional Bobbin Lacemaking
From International Old Lacers Guild for original design and execution of a Binche Lace “To Our Lady of the Snow”
1998 The Winged Tiger and The Lace Princess
Phil Yeh and Lieve Jerger
Hawaya Inc. & Cartoonists Across The World
Editor in Chief, Lace Magazine International Quarterly
1986-2000, 56 issues, 14 years.
Art Director, Uncle Jam Quarterly Nrs 96 through 99
The Bulletin. International Old Lacers, Inc.
Volume 30, Number 3, Spring 2010
Article: Metal Lace: From the Anvil to the Avant-Garde
Inside front cover: Metal Lace by Lieve Jerger
By Kim Davis
Kant in Vlaanderen/ Filum
Jaargang 14 - nummer 2 (April - Mei - Juni 2010)
ISSN nummer 1783-0958
Artikel” Van Spiegheltjes tot Sprookjeskoets.
By Marie Rose Delahaye
Random Lengths News. San Pedro Community Profile
March 5-18, 1992
Article: Lace Mania: Magazine Publisher Laces Up for Success
By Robin Berger
Los Angeles Herald Examiner
March 29, 1985
Article: Giving a traditional art form a new twist.
By Debra Zahn
Los Angeles Times/Home Magazine
February 6, 1983
Article: In the Grand Tradition
By Joan Dektar
Palos Verdes Review/Daily Breeze
Peninsula Artist Lieve Jerger
By Meredith Grenier
The Register/Around Home
October 11, 1980
Article: Copper Lace is What Wires This Artist
March 19, 1982
Article: Jerger weaves with gleaming copper, thread to express art.
By Donna Littlejohn
Art Press International No 33
Jerger Art Show
Independent Press Telegram/Arts
July 22, 1979
Article: Young Talent Winners named
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