Betsey Cogswell

Betsey Cogswell

Malden-based fiber artist, and her current favorite medium is wool. Most of Betsey’s work in the gallery is wool felt (scarves, pillow covers, beads, wall hangings), as well as knitted and crocheted bowls and bracelets. Betsey’s love of felting began when she bought some work from a master felter, and thought to herself: “I want to do this!”.

Aside from workshops with master felter Martien Van Zuilen, a Dutch/Australian felt artist and historian and with Nuno felt maker Jannice Zimmerman, Betsey is self-taught. Perhaps her love for wool can be attributed to the fact that the first Cogswell in America was a wool merchant from Wiltshire, England! Wool is both fire and water resistant. Humans have been making shelters, clothing, rugs, decorative objects, etc. From wool felt for millennia.

Betsey has lived her whole life in eastern Massachusetts, except for short stints in Saratoga Springs, NY and Evanston and Chicago, Illinois. She retired from Harvard University in 2017. Betsey has studied at Mass College of Art, the old Radcliffe Landscape Design program, and is currently doing printmaking at Maud Morgan Art Center in Cambridge. She is also an avid canoeist who has paddled on the San Juan River in Utah, the Rio Grande, the Soper River in Nunavut, and, closer to home, the Malden River.