I have spent many years exploring the fields of painting, print making and fabric arts, before deciding to devote myself full time to tapestry. I have exhibited widely over the past twenty-five years, locally, nationally, and internationally. My tapestries have been featured in several books and the subject of magazine and newspaper articles. In the summer of 2005, I published Cover Ups and Revelations: the Tapestries of Barbara Heller, available through my studio, the Fibre Art Studio on Granville Island, Vancouver, which is open to the public.
I have organized exhibitions and symposia, written articles and given lectures, edited publications and curated exhibitions. It has been my pleasure to represent Canada overseas at symposia and conferences and give lectures on the place of Canadian tapestry in the world. As well I have lectured on my own work, often in conjunction with exhibitions and with teaching workshops. I was the Canadian correspondent for the International Tapestry Journal and sat on the Board of the American Tapestry Alliance for 8 years. Currently I am the American Tapestry Alliance chair for Distance Learning. In 1993 I founded the B.C. Society of Tapestry Artists, a non-profit society for the promotion of tapestry, which organizes exhibitions and lectures. I am also the founder of the Canadian Tapestry Network and co-editor of the group’s newsletter.
I am a passionate proponent of the art of tapestry and of the place of tapestry in contemporary applied art.