About Aliana Grace
Aliana Grace Bailey is an interdisciplinary fiber artist taking up space with bold softness. She was born and raised in Washington, DC. She is a passionate advocate for radical self-love, wellness, and healing. Her work embraces artmaking as a vehicle for growth, building intimacy, and creating inner peace through weaving vibrant colors, preserving narratives, and creating environments–encompassing the body and providing viewers with a hugging… more
music that raised us: the vinyl series
2022, yarn, spinning fiber, & hand-dyed fabric.
Honoring my family through my art creates space for me to give them more of my time, archive their stories, and to ease my anxieties around future loss. It gives us joy, builds our relationship, gives the rest of our family an opportunity to learn more about each other, and gives me peace in knowing they will live on forever through my work. My dad took me to my very first concert, the TLC Fanmail Tour. When I think of home, music blasting from the basement is one of the first things I imagine. My dad’s lifelong relationship to and love for music seamlessly integrated into our lives as an everyday part of our upbringing. Through the musical presence he created in our home, his vast knowledge of genres, and his frequent storytelling of his own experiences, my appreciation for music is interwoven into his own. Through these weavings, I celebrate conversations and moments shared with my dad, as well as music that evokes a memory for us both. In creating this work, I returned home, bonded with my dad over his love for music, and dug through his favorite vinyl records. The weavings were created intuitively, with colors directly inspired by the vinyl covers and rhythm inspired by the music.
blue: ancestral healing
2022, yarn, spinning fiber, & hand-dyed fabric. 30 in x 223 in
I am inspired by my mom, grandmother and their connection to the color blue. Blue flows throughout our entire home—inside and out. It feels sacred and often shows up in the form of glass. My mom is a deep lover of literature, genealogy, and African American history. When I first asked my mom why she’s so drawn to the color blue, she shared her fascination for haint blue used on shutters and ceilings, the beauty of bottle trees, and the African meaning of blue being peace and togetherness. She ended with, “Why do I love blue? I am spiritually drawn to it.”
"finding peace" from the Sondheim Semi-Finalist Exhibition
2022-2023 fiber installation
yarn, spinning fiber, hand-dyed cotton, mixed media collage
2023. hand-dyed cotton
My hand-dyed locs throughout my work first entered my practice in my 2018 installation, My Body is Deserving, and has played a role throughout my work ever since. All of my approaches to experiencing mediums hold a different purpose. Painting is for release. Weaving is for connection. Collaging is for being seen. Crocheting is for understanding. These locs in the installation “Patience” were a mindfulness journey of learning what the material needs as it grows in size. It was a practice of creating support, listening to the material, moving through the process, and having faith—knowing I could undo and do it again. Through this work, I practiced the same themes that I needed to give to myself during a period of deep healing and rediscovery. As we grow, our relationships grow, and our visions grow—we must learn to adapt and evolve through the changes with patience and faith.
“thankful for her: rhythms of growth”
2023. Mixed Media on Cotton.
58 inches x 72 inches
Thankful for Her: Rhythms of Growth is a tribute to myself, my self-awareness, and my past self. Three self-portraits—including a 2014 me, are collaged together to create a meditation on time with self and appreciation for the rhythms of my growth. At times, through my practice, I unintentionally create artwork for the version of me that needs it on the other side—and for that, I thank my spiritual connection and ancestors. Towards the end of this piece, it became the soft, radiant, healing energy I needed while navigating emotional changes and relationship shifts. This piece honors the various journeys that I move through in solitude to evolve into new versions of myself to share with my loved ones and the world.
"intimate gestures & pinky promises"
intimate gestures & pinky promises
digital collage on velvet
73 in x 54 in
Human touch can increase feelings of trust, compassion, and generosity. Human touch can decrease feelings of fear and anxiety. "intimate gestures and pinky promises" is a visual and body movement interpretation of lessons learned from a seemingly healthy romantic relationship, being exposed as distorted and traumatic. Exploring the intimate gesture of handholding, the transfer of energy, and the way we connect through hands—the collage is documentation of performance.
The collage features actual polaroids from moments in the relationship and is surrounded by authentic loving, intimate gestures with myself post-relationship. The relationship with myself and understanding of myself is what made the relationship beautiful. The visual collage is reflected through words in the piece, "but you didn’t love him.”
"part two: blossoming"
part two: blossoming
2023. digital collage on velvet
54 inches x 72 inches
Part Two: Blossoming is the sister piece to “intimate gestures & pinky promises.” Part Two: Blossoming was created a year later, but used hand self-portraits from the same photo shoot in 2021. A year later, I was drawn to poses, compositions, and colors that are more expansive, lighter, natural, expressive, and loving—representative of the place I am today in comparison. This piece embraces a new era of freedom, loving, and openness to community.
monochromatic color study
Through weaving, I have challenged myself both in color and scale. Through monochromatic color studies, I intend to challenge myself through repetition, variety, and color—an investigation into how many ways I can express a color. How many textures of yellow can I dive into? How can shades and tints be portrayed through fiber? What is the impact of surrounding ourselves with these colors and these colors alone?
This screenprint is one of three with one being left behind at the Fabric Workshop and Museum. I was reflecting on the blessing of being an artist and the privilege of leaving our creations behind for other people to experience for years to come. A part of me and my story is left with that museum and when I—when we create, people are able to feel us, connect to our stories, and our legacy. Through drawings left behind from my uncle, I am able to feel connected to him, cocreate with him through this piece, and be reminded of the gifts my ancestors have given me. What we create, how we choose to live our lives, how we choose to love leaves impressions on the people who experience us. This piece explores the themes of legacy, love, ancestral support, and governing values.