click here for the printable overview
Eleanor Van de Water (1932-2005) Co-Founded the Fort Vancouver Tapestry
project and served as Director from 1999-2002. She was a nationally
recognized fiber artist and a lifelong resident of Clark County, Washington.
Her unique textile pieces are currently exhibited
in churches and private homes in Canada, Wales, Russia and the United
Sherry Mowatt, Artistic Director
Sherry Mowatt is a gifted artist (pen & ink, acrylics), stitcher, seamstress, knitter, quilter, upholsterer, horticulturist and carpenter.
Sherry designs and teaches new stitching techniques specific to surface design tapestries and textile narratives. She is responsible for all color selection, assigns all stitching projects to the artisans, and oversees all aspects of creating, framing and display of our tapestries. During her long association with the Grant House Folk Art Center at the Vancouver National Historic Reserve, Sherry gained the support and trust of artisans throughout the region for her dedication, perfection of craft and honest approach to a life guided by artistic vision.
The Fort Vancouver Tapestry was designated a Washington State Lewis
and Clark Legacy project in 2001. Our mission is to honor our region’s
history through a wool-on-linen textile narrative. The tapestry measures
28 inches high and 108 feet long. It will finish at just under 100,000
hours of embroidery.
Over 57 volunteer stitchers have donated time to the Tapestry.
Stitcher contribution averages 8-14 hours a week: 16,000 hrs/yr.
Project estimate is six years: 96,000 hrs/completion.
A three inch square takes approximately 1 hour.
When completed: Summer 2005.
How many people:
The Fort Vancouver Tapestry is supported primarily by volunteers. We
are guided by a Board of Directors and a staff of two.
Material variety and selection:
The Tapestry is composed of Portuguese wool and Belgian linen—the
Bayeux Tapestry is made of similar material and remains fresh looking
today. It was completed in 1067.
Panel selection committee:
An eight member selection committee suggested the subjects for each of
the seventy panels over a three day ‘retreat’. The committee
was made up of long term residents and local historians.
How many colors:
There are 111 colored yarns and an additional 8 custom ‘flesh tone’ yarns
in the Tapestry. Some of these have been blended to produce additional
tones. Many of the yarns have been blended to produce an additional 40
shades of color.
|Clark College, Vancouver, WA
||August 2005 - July 2006
|Vancouver Wine & Jazz Festival
|1st United Methodist Church, Vancouver, WA
|Timberline Lodge, Mt. Hood, OR
|1st Congregational Church UCC, Vancouver, WA
|Columbia Room, Washington State Capitol
||January - April 2007
|Trinity Lutheran Church, Vancouver, WA
|Joyo Community Network Center, Joyo City, Kyoto, Japan
||October - December 2007
For further information regarding viewing the Tapestry, or exhibition in your locale,
We are funded by local and civic organizations, foundation grants and the support of our community.
We rely on our community of friends as much as possible. For example, we teach life skills classes at the Washington School for the Deaf in Vancouver, WA in exchange for our studio space; a community based in kind donation.
However, any large scale multi-year community art project is expensive. And we need your help.
Please call Sherry for information on the many forms of community and individual support available. Your contribution will make all the difference.