A “cacophony of color”: batiks by East Tennessee artist Rothove on display in November

November 7, 2003
David Rasnake, Communications Assistant

Transilations, an exhibition of paper batik artwork by local artist Billi Rothove is currently on display in the Maryville College Fine Arts Center Gallery. The show is scheduled to run through Nov. 21.

A nationally renowned studio artist and educator, Rothove taught art at Central Missouri State University before relocating to East Tennessee in 1994. Professionally, she has been a featured presenter at conferences and workshops across the nation, including conferences of the National Art Education Association and the International Surface Design Association.

Transilations features 18 individual pieces of paper batik artwork, and according to Rothove, the title of the exhibit reflects the inclusion of both old and new works in the show. “The exhibition title, Transilations, is an attempt to merge the concepts, the definitions, and the words translations and transitions,” Rothove stated. The traveling exhibit has been on display in Missouri, Florida and Tennessee during the last two years.

The process of creating batik art usually begins with pieces of white cloth or paper. The artist alternately applies hot wax to the medium and dyes it, creating full, vivid patterns. Rothove often embellishes her batik with beads and thread, or stitches pieces together to create her signature paper quilts.

Rothove began creating batik yardages and paper quilts during her time as a student at the Kansas City Art Institute in the early 1970s. According to the artist, she continues to find new inspiration for work in the medium.

“ Paper batik has allowed me total immersion in an on-going love of pattern and color,” the artist said of her latest work. “It is simply delightful to work with a cacophony of color and pattern.”

Located in the College’s Fine Arts Center, the Gallery is open daily, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is free.