Gianofer Fields

Material Culturalist

Gianofer Fields is a freelance producer and reporter for NPR, BBC and Madison's WORT Community Radio. She says, “Once you seriously consider the objects you use to fill your emotional and functional needs, you will never see those things the same way ever again. From delightfully intriguing to dangerously obsessive, objects affect our daily lives. They creep into our subconscious. They say volumes about who we are or wish to be, without uttering a single word.”

If the only image the word embroidery conjures for you is one of dainty flowers cross stitched onto a tea towel, Melissa Reiss wants you to take another look.

Reiss’ blog states, quite emphatically, that embroidery can be anything. As she tells Lake Effect’s Material culture contributor Gianofer Fields, embroidery doesn’t have to be baby ducks and girls in bonnets doing “women’s work”:

The Kohler Art Library is located on the UW-Madison campus.  The Artists' Book Collection was established in the early 1970s to support the Art Department's courses in letterpress, printmaking, and papermaking.  There are now over 1,000 artists' books in the library.  Some are one-of-a-kind, while others are produced in limited editions.  But Material Culture contributor Gianofer Fields wondered, what makes a book an artists' book?

Fields met with Lyn Korenic, the Director of the Kohler Art Library, who says that’s a tough question to answer:

arnoKath / Flickr

Material Culture contributor, Gianofer Fields introduces us to remarkable people – and things – in the project, Radio Chipstone.  This week, she continues a series called "Curator’s Choice," introducing us to Tracy Honn.  Honn is a printer and curator of Silver Buckle Press, a working museum of letterpress history in the Department of Special Collections at the UW Madison Memorial Library.

Chazen Museum of Art

What happens when the material you use to make your art changes its properties over time?

Gianofer Fields

A garden can grow flowers and food, but as one Madison neighborhood is finding out, it can also grow community.

If you're looking for a true horseman, look no further than Richard Savatski, who lives just outside of Waterloo, Wis.

Gianofer Fields

In today's globalized world, it's easy to spot the culture of another nation infused into that of our own. But it's also true that past cultural changes in one country can shape current trends in ours.

Gianofer Fields

Most of us want the latest and greatest in technology and so consign our old telephones to the recycle bin once the newer models come out - but not Madison's Pat Carew.

Gianofer Fields

Becoming a cowboy isn't the first thing most people decide to do when they get a life-changing diagnosis. But then, Tom Duffy isn't like most people.

Gianofer Fields

When we put out the spread for our holiday parties, it usually includes one or two traditional dishes - but what did our immigrant ancestors serve?

Gianofer Fields

Everybody thinks they have a killer recipe - but it takes a lot more than a single dish to start a restaurant.

Beverly Gordon

Have you ever been so focused on a task you're doing that you lose all track of time and place? It's a concept academics call "transformative state or flow."


Can carving a pumpkin bring up the past?

Gianofer Fields

People spend a lifetime collecting things that tell their stories but what happens when for whatever reason, they can't keep them anymore.

Gianofer Fields

We meet the pilot of a B-17 Flying Fortress.