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Exhibitions and Displays

The Library welcomes the opportunity to provide local artists the opportunity to exhibit their works to the general public.  Exhibits include a wide range of media and content thus reflecting the diversity and the vibrancy of the artistic community in Southbridge and Central Massachusetts.

Current Exhibitions and Displays

August's Exhibit

Textile Portraits
by Sylvia Bicki

Bicki studio

The Jacob Edwards Library is pleased to host the work of local textile artist Sylvia Bicki during the month of August.  Originally from Southbridge, Ms. Bicki now works out of her Connecticut-based "sewing haven" Needle Nivana Studio.  Her work can be found on Etsy at

A reception will be held on Thursday, August 1, 2019 at 6:30 pm, with light refreshments available, courtesy of the Friends of the Jacob Edwards Library. All welcome! 

Artist Statement:
Hello, my name is Sylvia Bicki. Creating has always been a driving force in my life. I started quilting at fourteen years old and have sewn many traditional quilts since then. I eventually ventured out of my comfort zone. After studying many art quilt books, I embarked into the world of textile art. I found my niche! I am not sure if the process of creating is more satisfying, or the finished piece. I always say that using thread, needle and fabric is likened to the artists who use paint and brush to convey their images onto canvas. Their brush is my needle, their paint is my fabric. Each portrait is an intricate study of the subject. The finished portraits, entirely of fabric, are placed over stretched canvas frames ready to be hung. You can find portraits at NeedleNirvanaStudio on

If you would like to learn more about the process of creation, go to my YouTube channel Needle Nirvana Studio and watch portraits (in the making) "come alive!"  

My name is Sylvia Bicki and I'm from Clinton CT, originally from Southbridge, MA. There were many moves in-between. My favorite place anywhere we moved was the fabric store, which my children will attest. I started sewing at nine years old. I actually still have my little singer sewing machine from that time. First I was interested in sewing my clothes, which lasted through high school. Eventually I became interested in various sewing projects. At the age of fourteen I sewed my first traditional quilt, just squares cut from clothing I had already sewn. To this day I can remember (surprisingly!) what clothes I made from looking at those patches. Time went on and I became busy with raising my family but still sewed here and there and would bring my items in to stores for consignment.  Many years passed, we moved to Southbridge again and I became even busier with my growing family. We moved to Connecticut and that's when I started to make traditional quilts. I made many of these throughout the years; however, the quilt machine took up a lot of space. The quilts I didn't make for my family were given as gifts. One day a friend of mine told me about a landscape art quilt she saw. After she told me about this, I bought a book about landscape art quilts. I read through it but it did not excite me to the point I wanted to use my time making one. I then investigated the internet for other books on art quilt Ideas. I found two about portrait quilts. That interested me very much. I found two and studied them and took a bit of knowledge from both and incorporated that into my own way of making textile portraits, which is what I call them now. I started out with making soft portrait "quilts" but eventually took away the "quilt" (three layers) aspect. I wanted something more manageable to hang. I only have one thin layer underneath the fabric (which I glue my fabric onto before sewing in place) and then stretch the portrait over the stretched canvas. All my textile portraits are created in my "sewing haven" called Needle Nirvana Studio.
Sponsored by Friends of Jacob Edwards Library.

Upcoming Exhibitions

  • Saul Ramos and ALNE (Arte Latino New England) (September)
  • Group Show Curated by Piyali Samant (October)
  • Suzanne Staubach (November)
  • Gingerbread Houses (December)
     Download Display and Exhibit Policy

Download Artist Application

Download Release and Indemnification Agreement


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