Joan Wortis refers to herself as having had many lives, all of them in worlds of art. Her first career as a modern dancer and choreographer was followed by a new direction into the field of fiber art. For many years she participated in prestigious competitive shows with her woven textiles. After studying with the renowned textile designer, Jack Lenor Larsen, she went on to design woven fabrics for major companies and taught weave design at Philadelphia College of Textiles and Science.
After a period of living and traveling around the world, Joan began to open up new creative possibilities using paper. Free from the geometry of the loom, she worked with monotype, collage and assemblage. This work of the past 15 years has been exhibited at galleries and museums across the country and abroad. Her work in printmaking, collage, and mixed-media reveals sensitivity to line, rhythm and asymmetry, as well as evoking the lyrical qualities of dance. The use of color, contrast between form and background, and her use of pattern and texture are clearly influenced by a deep appreciation of fiber traditions from around the world.