La Vie en Soie(e) — an exposition

One of the best parts of the French Muse trip was the inclusion of visiting with artists, designers and exclusive dealers in their homes.  It allowed a glimpse not only into the work of local artisans but also their homes to see their collections and decor.  A wonderful opportunity to see how fellow brocante lovers use and display their special finds in their own personal way.

There is a very special and unique exhibition on the history of silk production in Provence that opened May 15th in Bonnieux by Joanna Staniszkis.  We were treated to a private showing of her creations in a magnificent space adjacent to her home. The silk worm and the mulberry trees in Provence have a fascinating history and Joanna’s artistic interpretation is spellbinding.  These photos do not do it justice.  Please visit Joanna’s website to learn more about her and see additional photos of her current exhibition.  Such a talented lady, and a gracious host.  My world is bigger because of this very special experience.


Joanna describing the display on the wall where silk worms were allowed to inhabit this entanglement and where they formed cocoons, emerged as moths, mated and laid eggs, and died shortly afterwards.  The remaining cocoons hold the precious silk threads that are spun into magical, yet durable, fabrics.




One of the most impressive pieces in this exhibition is the World War II silk parachute, with attached carved wooden pins of moths and WWI fighter planes.




A remaining silk worm, chomping happily on mulberry leave.  We decided his name was Julien.
So, so soft strands of natural silk spun into thread


At the end of our visit, Joanna gave each of us a few mementos – a book about the exhibition, a carved wooden moth, a silk worm cocoon, and three woven pieces representing the stages of the silk worm’s metamorphosis.  Treasures forever.




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