Tie-Dye For Lifeby Niamh McCooey
In the 1960s, Courtenay Pollock developed a folding tie-dye technique which he calls 'Geometriart'. Merging origami and tie-dye, Pollock’s unique approach to these crafts gained him recognition not only in the art world, but in rock and roll too as his works provided the backdrop to many a Grateful Dead performance.
At first, Pollock became widely known for producing many tie-dye t-shirts, mandalas and speaker fronts. Beginning his artistic journey during the Psychedelic era, a time when vibrant colours and free spirits were often combined in the arts and crafts, he still relishes the ambiguous imagery inherent in tie-dye, and encourages his viewers to see whatever they want in his abstract art.
‘My first ever commission was in the late sixties,’ Pollock explains. ‘I had been tie dying just a matter of weeks and soon had a commission from a local boutique for a meditation room. This project also included a complete floor covering, seating covering and a mandala. It was a completely tie dyed room.’ From there, Pollock went on to become one of America’s most famous tie-dye artists, whose legacy is still felt in the textiles industry today.
Read more about Pollock's influence and the links between tie-dye and shibori in the current issue of Selvedge.