About Karen

Hi! I’m Karen LeBlanc, and I’m a fibre artist and weaver focusing on traditional, functional and practical forms of weaving; innovative, contemporary tapestry pieces; and, repurposing tartan and tweed garments into hand-stitched pieces. My work has evolved over the past five years to include public art installations. For example, I have installed 3 public art pieces in New Brunswick and I am working on the fourth public art piece for Nova Scotia. I am really intrigued with public art and the process to submit a proposal, develop a prototype or maquette, create the woven pieces and install them in the building. One proposal was to install an outdoor temporary rope sculpture in a park. This was a fun, challenging and very rewarding project where the sculpture had to be installed and removed in the same night! The more rewarding component was to engage the public in the weaving process in the rain, but many people were delighted to weave on this sculptural piece.

Another evolution in my work as a fibre artist and weaver is to create three dimensional pieces such as bowls, boxes, spirals and pyramids.

In 2024, I created a Branch Out and Weave for Climate Change workshop as part of my Harm to Harmony Residency. Participants used a branch as a “loom” and wove natural materials through the branch. After the weaving process, the woven branches were singed over an open fire to bring awareness of climate change, raising global temperatures and wildfires around the world. This project actually evolved from my Burnt Earth piece that was exhibited in the Craft NS members exhibition in 2023.

Fredericton Arts Alliance Residency 2023

I love to have my pieces selected for exhibitions. I have exhibited internationally, nationally, regionally and locally and participated in residencies in Fredericton and Toronto. In 2019, four of my woven wearables were part of the ArtWear fashion show and exhibition in Fort Collins CO. I have also exhibited in fibre art and weaving exhibitions in Reno NV, Milwaukee WI, Muskegon MI, New York NY, Toronto ON, Halifax NS, and many other galleries. I am a member of the several professional organizations: American Tapestry Alliance, Handweavers Guild of America, CraftNB, Guild of Canadian Weavers, Beaverbrook Art Gallery, CraftNS, and many more. I am the Past President of the Fibre Arts Network and the Treasurer of the NB Crafts Foundation. Prior to retiring from my full-time job in 2019, I worked for many non-profit organizations during my professional career including my last position at the Joint Economic Development Initiative (JEDI) as the Senior Project Manager where I managed workforce and economic development projects for Indigenous people in New Brunswick.

Harm to Harmony Residency Program