Woven Heaven, Tangled Earth (527)

Woven Heaven Tangled Earth by Susan Plum
Woven Heaven, Tangled Earth
Stop Number: 
527

Susan Plum (American, b. 1944)
United States, Brooklyn, New York
1999
Flameworked borosilicate glass
Diam: 91.44 cm
(2001.4.70)

For Susan Plum, glass is a metaphor for light and a way to make visible what is invisible. This sculpture was inspired by her research into ancient Mesoamerican cosmology.

Plum says: “My woven work in glass was originally inspired by the Mayan goddess Ixchel, the first weaver of the Americas. I later discovered that Mayan and other Mesoamerican traditions use the weaver’s loom as a metaphor for the universe. The loom of the universe is believed to be constructed of filaments of light from which the Heavens and Earth are said to be woven. These woven strands of light can become entangled around the Earth, and it is the job of Mayan shamans to untangle this ‘discord.’ Thus, the act of weaving, for the Maya, symbolically rebuilds and re-energizes the world.”