1997 Al Stohlman Award: Silva Fox
Taken completely by surprise, Silva Fox was stunned at hearing her name announced as the 1997 recipient of the Al Stohlman Award for Achievement in leathercraft. Being selected by five notable leatherworking judges from the largest field of entrants so far this decade will help to make this award ceremony a memorable one. All judges required extra time to make their decision.
Silva Fox studied drawing, painting, sculpture, and all else that was art related during high school. Then she met a most impressionable man in 1976, the manager of a Tandy Leather Store, Mr. Harry Resinger. “This is the man that influenced my future art pursuits.” Soon after, Silva began a graphic arts/advertising career which continued for seventeen years. Silva remarks, “The multiple, dimensional quality and texture of leather lends itself beautifully to life-like wildlife paintings and portraits. Exquisite details and the most holographic appearance of the sculpted images are impossible to recreate on canvas. The initial response to the pictures is that they are oil or acrylic paintings, but when seen from a proper distance the depth of the images is clearly discernable. Viewing the picture while slowly walking by it creates an illusion of movements in the figures.”
An innovative and remarkable approach to leather art has been Silva’s developing style for the blind. In her sculpted leather painting, “Laughing Zebras” was influenced by attending “Accent on Access”, a tactile exhibit for the blind sponsored by the Illinois Artisans Shop. With leather tooling, Silva exaggerates through embossing and textures and realistic features so a blind person can “see” the composition. Over 120 leather plugs were used to create the embossing. Silva is clearly a master leather artist with numerous awards and the best of shows to her credit. Multiple articles and patterns have been published by The Leather Crafters and Saddlers Journal contributing to the teaching of other artists and crafters. She is definitely one who has dedicated her time and skills to the preservation and advancement of leather as a fine art medium through her educational contributions. This is precisely in keeping with the spirit of the wishes of Al and Ann Stohlman.
"1997 Al Stohlman Award: Silva Fox”. The Leather Crafters & Saddlers Journal. Jan/Feb 1998: p 8. Print.