Artist: Laura Schmidt

Title: Pectoral

Attribution: Pectoral, 2024, Laura Stangel Schmidt

Year: 2024

Materials: Paper, ink, paint, thread, cord, rebar

Dimensions: 26" x 65" x 3"

Image Statement: In traditional and tribal societies, pectoral ornaments were worn at sacred ceremonies, public celebrations, and sometimes as protective armor. Crafted from culturally significant objects, such as bones, shells, or seeds, or from rare and precious materials, such as jade and gold, pectoral ornaments were signifiers of the wearer’s social position, place of origin, and spiritual beliefs. My Pectoral is an homage to that ancient tradition of expressing identity and community through craft. I began Pectoral by creating abstract designs on large sheets of rice paper using India ink and acrylic paint. I fused the rice paper to Bristol board, which I then cut into 1” squares and machine stitched into 16 chains of increasing length from 25 beads per chain to 100 beads per chain. There are 1000 beads in the completed piece.