Laurie dill-Kocher, Contemporary Tapestries and Fiber Art

Art that is integrated with it's environment from concept through installation.

Spiritual Nexus
Spiritual Nexus depicts the harmony of faith in the unique and cohesive pursuit of devotion. Multicolored birds emitting from the rectangles represent paths chosen during journeys towards the light. The bird’s flight is symbolized as upward to signify the progression of erudition towards spiritual fulfillment. Two of the birds, one dark and one light, denote divergent belief systems representing a sort of spiritual yin-yang. The oval shapes represent the messages or signs that emit from the light, and thus when the bird shapes coincide with the oval shapes, a comprehensive understanding of the light is possible.
Installed in 2003 at Robert Morris University, Ann and Alvin Rogal Family Chapel, Pittsburgh, PA.

Forest Preserve


This tapestry titled "Forest Preserve" is 17 feet wide by 7.5 feet high. Commissioned for the conference room, S.B. Ashley Management Corporation, The Powers Building, Rochester, NY, 2004. Forest Preserve exemplifies the vision of a secluded environment. The enveloping dark surround is momentarily broken by the vibrant burst of abstract birds cutting their way through the landscape. This setting is analogous to the push and pull of everyday life. While there is time for quiet reflection, there is always opportunity for change and growth.


Communion of Saints detail

The "Communion of Saints" depicts the transformation of the soul as it embraces faith and enters heaven. The visual image of the cross is used to form an entrance and exemplifies the unification and spiritual solidarity between heaven and earth. At the point of transitioning the cross, the birds are highlighted by their metamorphosis of color and shape. These elements, combined with the subtle color transformations, symbolize that we are made into the Communion of Saints through the cross.

Installed in 2007 at Immaculate Heart of Mary, Grand Junction CO
Dawn of Magic

This public commission was created for the Pattee/Paterno Library, Penn State University, 2002. The title of this tapestry/fiber construction is "The Dawn of Magic". The Dawn of Magic represents two separate but cohesive images that symbolize an abstract concept of heaven and earth. These two elements are comprised of numerous symbols that when read as a whole, embody the heart of the work. This spirit or language is constructed layer by layer, each piece sustaining the framework for the image to follow. The foundation of this imagery begins with the bottom half of the fiber piece. The bottom grid signifies the boundaries we are constrained with on earth. This also mirrors the framework of the windows that are a dominant element of the space. The color is also pivotal and was chosen not only to visually weight the piece, but also to bind it to the dominant features of the architectural elements already present. The wrapped elements that extend from this grid or “worms” are the active ingredient of the bottom “earth” portion of the piece. These worms represent the successes and failures, conflicts and resolutions that happen during the course of life. They are inextricably bound to everything that happens to create the person - they are not negative or positive, they just are. The upper half represents a “heaven-like” image. The green shapes reflect a sense of nature and represent the trees that had to be eliminated to create the current space. These shapes develop through a series of various kinetic elements “skyward” emulating the beginning of a new day. The purples are also a necessary element to emphasize the point when night evolves into day, thus increasing the visual tension between these two elements. The final visual element, represented by circles, symbolize fireflies, an evening event that can be seen on the Penn State campus. The fireflies evoke a palatable sense of childhood, a time in life when all is possible. This element communicates energy, excitement and wonder. Magic. This sense of future is open with possibilities and creates the final important element of the piece. This sense of childhood where anything is possible is an important element to remember, not just for the artist, but the individual who wants to keep learning, developing and growing.  This is an original Work owned and commissioned by Penn State.




Dawn of Magic (proposed sketch)





The Path of The Ladder


Installed in 1998, The Summit, Rochester, NY
Spirit of Life

"The Spirit of Life" 2006, Temple Adath Israel, Lexington, KY. The imagery in the tapestry, Spirit of Life unites the symbolism of the menorah and the Torah with visual elements of color and space. The prevailing image, the menorah, is fashioned from the outline of branch like limbs resembling the limbs of a tree. While this links the menorah and the tree of life, it also serves to represent the continuity of tradition. Trees epitomize the connection between heaven and earth and denote life, immortality, strength, regeneration and eternity. The image of the tree of life links the menorah to the symbol of the Torah as well as immortality in the world to come. The Torah is represented by a scroll that overlays and interlocks the menorah. The scroll is comprised of a field of barley which is one of the seven species that signify spring and the fertility of Israel. The green of the barley signifies the strength of the visual statement of life that the barley brings to the site. Liturgy proclaims that the Torah is "a Tree of Life to all who hold fast to it" and that it represents "eternal life planted in our midst". The colors utilized in the Spirit of Life were chosen for their connection to the space and their symbolic content. The color blue was chosen to convey the firmament and divinity, as well the State of Israel. The stars in the upper half of the panels illustrate limitlessness. Surrounding all of the images is a circle that represents wholeness, strength and unity. The circle fades from blue to red to bind the temple with the tapestry and to express the association of earth and water with life. The tapestry contains only a portion of this circle, the remainder reaching out to embrace the congregation.
Strength of Spirit

The imagery of the Strength of Spirit is comprised of several layers. The first image is the symbol of the dove, which signifies the Holy Spirit, a member of the trinity. The number of doves, twelve, represent the number of tribes of Israel and the number of apostles. The doves are in flight over a greenish triangle, which is also a symbol of the trinity and represents the triumph of life over death. Behind the triangle is a mountain signifying Mount Sinai. The wheat colored circles overlying the abstract cross symbolize the grains of wheat or manna, the bread of heaven. The number of these circles is meant to embody eternity with the doves below connecting the eternity of heaven to earth.
Installed in 2003 at The Rochester Catholic Diocese, Rochester, NY.


Unitarian Church proposal

Proposed Sketch for First Unitarian Church of Rochester, Rochester, NY. Total of 300 square feet to compliment the current side fiber panels by Jack Lenore Larsen.
Dawn of the Heart
This large scale tapestry titled "Dawn of the Heart" was created for a private residence in Kansas, 2005. The inherent beauty of a landscape, the intensity of a sunrise, can bind one to the soul of a place. When this place is home, the influence of nature - the subtle movement of trees, sunlight reflecting through winter limbs - can be a calming influence to daily discord. The darkening of approaching conditions and a sense that a storm is on the horizon can also signal that a calmer time will come again. It is a time to look and watch the birds alight in the trees and contemplate the renewal of spring.