By Celine De Perlinghi Johanson
I wish I’d known about artist Annie Horkan and Studio Bliss Floorcloths when I was living in my college dorm. The color and pattern of Annie’s “African Dance” floorcloth would have added some imaginative fun and flair to the room’s four piercing white walls. I spent hours studying German manuscripts in that room – I could have used the lift.
Annie was inspired to design “African Dance” following a 2005 trip to Mali. She wanted to visually incorporate the sounds of the djembe drums and the beauty of the movement of African dancing. She created this floorcloth design as a tribute to the African dance.
That’s a bit more than most of us would expect to encounter in a simple floorcloth. We love American décor manufacturers (large and small) that find ways to raise our expectations!
Annie Horkan has been painting over 25 years. In 1985 she decided to combine her art with functionality and made her first floorcloth. Though this first floorcloth was designed as a gift for a friend, she continued to produce floorcloths and began her company Studio Bliss Floorcloths, while continuing her career as a professional artist and painter.
What is striking and special about Annie’s floorcloths is that they originate from the same pure artistic inspiration as any landscape or floral painting she might create.
“I incorporate more of my life experiences in my paintings, but on a different level with the floorcloths. In painting floorcloths, I reduce the experiences down to the purity of color and design. I take a lovely, green sea urchin shell I find on the beach, and study it to see how I can interpret it into a design. Or, I take a sacred symbol that speaks to me, and see how I can translate it into a design,” said Annie.
Whether she is creating a painting or floorcloth, Annie is guided by the same “art spirit” and creative flow. She might be inspired by a beautiful scene, a certain color combination, or even a dream. Nature and travel are among her favorite and most reliable sources of inspiration. There is no mindless, heartless rubber-stamping of pattern in Annie Horan’s floorcloths. Each design is an inspired work of art.
Environmentally Friendly AND Durable
Studio Bliss’ floorcloths are made from heavy weight cotton canvas, making them completely renewable and biodegradable. Annie uses nontoxic paints and sealants to keep her floorcloths eco-friendly, kid-friendly and pet-friendly. The floorcloths are stain-resistant and require only simple maintenance, making them a long-lasting and sustainable home accessory.
We suspect they might even be able to withstand the spills and abuses of your average college coed, and still go onto be a functional accessory in an apartment or future home.
You can see more of Annie’s work at: http://floorcloths.com.