Stories in silk

Nussbaum attended college briefly before moving into a cabin in the woods of Massachusetts and focusing on her silk art. While she works as a cook and caterer and house cleaner, she focuses her passion into meeting with people to create her personalized art. Without any formal training in art, she has learned from her experiences.

"My paintings are specific customized pieces that are reflective of their personal experiences," said Nussbaum. "You can wear it and you can wash it, and it really flows like water."

She meets with various people to celebrate occasions or changes in their lives. She has even met with some cancer patients and survivors who shared their stories of struggles and overcoming adversity and what they hope for in the future.

One time, Nussbaum said, she visited the home of a woman in the middle of cancer treatment, and she sat and cried with her. She created a piece of artwork, which unlike most, can be worn since it is fabric, and the woman said she would wear it for inspiration and hope while in the hospital.

"It is really about the story telling for me. It is a really beautiful way to bring people together and share in a really intimate way," she said.

For 11 years she's done silk artwork and she's created more than 150 pieces. The process of making the art starts off with her stretching a piece of silk onto a frame and sketching onto it with light dye. To keep the dye from spreading, she puts down a border around the shapes she draws. Then she fills in each little shape with a color and tries to use a slightly different color for each shape. The process of how the silk art comes together reminds her of stained glass windows.

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