2009 Weave of the week #22: “Who Robbed Roy and How?”

"Who Robbed Roy and How?" by Ann Rosenthal

"Who Robbed Roy and How?" by Ann Rosenthal

This week’s weave is another mind-bender from my friend Ann Rosenthal, whose complex woven piece “When Opposites Attract” I wrote about in January.

This work is called “Who Robbed Roy and How?” Ann described it in her weaving notes as being a combination of “2×2 twill [the checks and lighter tan background], doublecloth tapestry [the spotted cat], single cloth tapestry [the darker tan background], and discontinuous warp and weft section [the missing red square].” I also learned from the notes that the piece was woven on two beams, 8 harnesses and treadles, and that some kind of stretcher was used for the twill area.

I still don’t understand how this piece was woven, and I probably never will, but I think that to appreciate it fully it’s important to understand that it is all one completely woven piece.

I asked Ann once about her creative process, and she said that it often involves fitting together three unrelated things. In this case those things were: (1) the image of the Peruvian cat shown below;  (2) the red-and-black-checked Rob Roy tartan that Ann was weaving at her sample weaving job; and (3) her interest in, and experiments with, Peruvian and Coptic weaving techniques.

Peruvian cat 1100-1400 A.D.

Peruvian cat 1100-1400 A.D.

Ann and I first met at a Weavers’ Guild exhibition because I was so wowed by a sophisticated prize-winning piece of hers, ” Matte for Cat,” (see Gallery page) that I asked to meet her. I discovered that we not only shared a love of cat imagery, but both made our living as Garment Center sample weavers. All of Ann’s weaving is done with yarn that was discarded by former employers — for example, “Who Robbed Roy and How?” was woven with an 80/20 wool/nylon blend.

Some years after that Guild exhibition, I bought her Rob Roy piece, and now Ann and I also share the photo shown below, of my cherished cat Sweeney echoing the pose of his distant Peruvian cousins.

Sweeney 2000 A.D.

Sweeney 2000 A.D.


4 Responses

  1. Fern,
    So you’re the lucky person who owns this piece. I have always loved it and remember it from the show.
    Thanks for sharing it with the Internet community.
    Ann, give us more

    • Hi, Terry, Yes, I’m the lucky owner, and I love it too : ) I’ll pass your message on to Ann. I don’t know if there’s anything on her loom now, but “Swept Away” and “A Not So Still Life” (in my latest blog post) were done in 2009.

      Thanks very much for reading and commenting.

  2. I love that weaving!!! (And I’m not even a cat person!)

    As soon as I saw it, I thought I recognized the artist. She really weaves interesting things!

    That’s a great picture of Sweeney with the cloth too!


    • Sue, So glad that you like Ann’s artwork. You can tell that I’m a fan. Thanks for posting.


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