I am Maija Zemitis, owner and sole Visual Artist at MaiTribe Studio Gallery, in central Ontario, Canada.
My home and studio are on the shores of beautiful Georgian Bay. We live in the tiny hamlet of Big Bay. Full time residents count only about 25 families. These numbers swell significantly in the summer, when cottagers and visitors come from Ontario, Quebec and Europe to enjoy nature at it’s finest!
Over the years, I have worked in many art techniques including: printmaking, coloured pencil drawing, airbrush painting (on paper, canvas and fabric), papier mache, collages and Natural Dyes on fabric. Over time, I have merged several of them together. This has made my work visually richer and made me a more disciplined artist.
At this time, my focus is on Textile Design, using Natural dyes on fibres such as Cotton, Silk and Linen. As well, I use upcycled fabrics.
My Fine Arts education focus was primarily on Printmaking. So, many of the tools and techniques I am now using on textiles are directly linked to this background.
I work with a variety of Natural Dyes, some of which I source and process locally and others I buy during my travels or from online shops.
Different textile design techniques that I use include shibori, resist pastes and botanical printing. Often I incorporate all three in a single piece of fabric.
The seed for tying and dyeing (shibori) with Natural dyes was planted during a visit to the state of Gujarat, in India. There, I met several textile artists, whom have practiced this craft for many generations.
Since that visit, I have twice been a student of Michel Garcia, at Maiwa School of Textiles.
Additionally, I have taken an online workshop, with India Flint
It’s always magical to remove the threads or the resists from a fabric, after it has been immersed in a dye pot. Equally enthralling is the sometimes surprising colour result. It’s all about experimentation (and chemistry).
My art influences, in recent years have been inspired by my travels, to countries such as Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Bali and India.