AFO Presents: Stitched Portraiture Workshop


September 23, 2022

LGBTQIA artist Michael-Birch Pierce (MBP) led a stitched portraiture workshop for Art Foundation students. 

MBP discussed how our society uses textiles and personal adornment as tools to craft identity and communicate key aspects of ourselves non-verbally. MBP presented their work (explicitly covering the construction of queerness and artifice) and the works of Bisa Butler, Cayce Zavaglia, and others. MBP utilized Art Foundation’s bank of 16 sewing machines and demonstrated hand-stitching techniques.

This workshop allowed Art Foundation students to work with a prominent Richmond queer artist, introduced them to the broader LGBTQIA community, explored gender and sexual identity, and validated their lived experiences.

Michael-Birch Pierce is a fiber artist and fashion designer. They received a B.F.A. in fashion design from VCU, where they now teach Fashion Design and Art Foundation. They also studied at the Savannah College of Art and Design for an M.F.A. in fibers focusing on embroidery and embellishment. They have completed artist residencies in Hong Kong and Lacoste, France, and exhibited in numerous galleries and museums domestically and abroad. They have performed their embroidered portraits at Oscar and Super Bowl events, Design/Miami, and SXSW, and worked with clients such as Visa, Target, Amazon, Delta, NBCUniversal, and Airbnb.