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Editor's page.

EDITOR'S PAGE

Every once in a while we are struck by creativity and innovation from a most unexpected source. This time it is from the usually conservative, sometimes humdrum world of needlepunching.

Our cover photo this month is a bit unconventional compared to those in the past, but that is because the concept it represents is so unlike anything else we've ever encountered. This pop art is part of a concept called Lamontage developed by New York City artist and entrepreneur Liora Manne that utilizes needlepunched nonwoven fabrics in a way very different from a filter, geotextile or papermaker felt.

We have discussed this concept in the past, most recently as a feature article in our August issue, but we felt compelled to give ti the additional exposure on our cover this month. We may hate to admit it, but the nonwovens industry isn't the most glamorous, sexy business in the world. We should be pleased that Ms. Manne has taken our little technology into the mainstream of the pop art world (as much as there is a mainstream in pop art, anyway).

Lamontage utilizes acrylic needled fabric in an array of colors, much in the same way a traditional artist would use a palette of ink for a painting. Lamontage, which is a combination of the French word "lamina," for layering, and "montage," for image, takes these needled fabrics (from an inventory 350 different colors) and places them on a background cloth in whatever design the artist wants--products have ranged from an abstract scene of The Jetsons to a Zebra skin rug. The loose fabric is then hand tacked and sent out to a contract needlepuncher for final needling.

Ms. Manne, who holds a master's degree in textile design engineering from North Carolina State University and who first saw Lamontage performed at an Israeli Kibbutz, should be commended for her vision in taking a staid technology and introducing it into the art world. The concept has come a long way since we first saw it back in the spring, with a new process having been developed to make it better suited for rugs and home furnishings. Well-known artists such as Peter Max and Kenny Scharf are already exploring Lamontage.

We can tak some credit, too, because somewhere back along the road to development Ms. Manne had contacted us for information on this technology called needlepunching. Credit also goes out to needle supplier Foster Needle, which provided the technical details of this "black art" and has done much of the final needling of Lamontage. Foster Needle even had a sample of it on display at IDEA '90 last month.

Lamontage is certainly not going to replace baby diapers, or even adult diapers, as a leading end use for nonwovens. But it is a prime example of the vision vital to keept the excitement and enthusiasm of the nonwovens industry and its participants. We'll keep an eye out for similar advances and creative thinking. Meanwhile, enjoy the art on this month's cover. We can let you know where you can buy one.
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Title Annotation:Lamontage art form, using neddlepunched nonwoven fabrics
Author:Jacobsen, Michael A.
Publication:Nonwovens Industry
Article Type:editorial
Date:Oct 1, 1990
Words:511
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