Monday, March 25, 2013

Easter Eggs 2013

Longtime blogistas will remember that every year I blow and decorate eggs to give as gifts to people who've been special since the last time I did it. Handsome Son always gets one to add to his collection, and my lovely cleaning family get one each, and this year a couple of other people will be included just because they're not just anyone!  then if I have visitors I usually invite them to pick one to take home.

This is not really about religion, more about celebrating the season and, this year, hurrying it on a bit.

So here's the series:  eggs, empty, contents in the bowl to be made into omelettes and scrambles

In progress in the studio, acrylic metallic paint used to sponge on, gold then turquise then aqua then gold again.

And the finished eggs for the year

Here they're in their crowd, with older eggs, the Boehm bunny, Limoges eggs and a Wedgwood miniature cup and saucer holding eggs from my dear late cockatiel.  No need to blow such tiny eggs, since the contents dry up without help.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

African and Guatemalan Textiles at Ellarslie

I spent an afternoon being carried away with the presence of all kinds of textiles, weavings, wall hangings, ranging from antique African, collected and exhibited by David Bosted, to present day art in the Guatemalan tradition, courtesy Armando Sosa, long a local resident and teacher of weaving and a great textile artist.

 Armando's work is fine, detailed, beautiful, in silks and fine fibers, based on the traditional weaving of Guatemala where he learned from his family, and apprenticed, before coming to the US to pursue art weaving as his livelihood.

 Today's event at Ellarslie, a mansion in the middle of an old estate in Trenton,now the Museum of the City of Trenton, was a gallery walk and participatory lecture on the African textile section of the exhibit, given by the collector, David Bosted, who had suggested and lent some of his African textile collection to exhibit.

 And there was the work of a local designer, Pat Key, of garments she made using African hand dyed fabrics. She was there, too, wearing one of her own creations, hand dyed fabric from Ghana, and brought along some of her own collected African textiles, mostly very long pieces used as wraps. Many of the audience were experts in textiles and the give and take at the lecture was, well, let's say I learned a lot.

And Nick, the presenter's son, modeled his vest, the front created from scraps of Kente and mud cloth, in itself a collision of haves and have nots, kente being the fabric of kings, and mudcloth of the person in the street. Other collectors shared their textiles with the group, and I'll just put a stream of pix up, without captions, since it's pretty clear what's going on here!

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Madrigal, the song is sung!

Here's my Madrigal piece, complete with blue crystal beads and little pearls, and what fun it was chasing the pearls all over, but here they are, corraled and stitched down, and I really like this little piece.

The gold thread is full of sparkles which don't show up here.  It can be flat, as a picture, my preference, or folded corner to corner, tasseled and hung as an ornament.  Either way, it's a great project.  And now I can get back to my freeform!  my real nature demands that I do that right away.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Madrigal goes on, nearly there

This is the most fun to stitch, all lovely gold thread and fat red stuff, and blues, and eventually there will be beads and pearls!  decadent.  Like eating a box of chocolates all to yourself.  Not that I would know anything about that, of course..

But it's good to have it to hand today, since I'm under the weather, some cold thing, which, in addition to a snowstorm, is keeping me home for once, not even able to get out this evening to receive a special township honor, sigh.  Anyway, they tell me they'll make me Artist of the Year in another ceremony.  This is nice of them.

I should add that the event is huge, many audience members, biggest room in town, but it's not all about me -- it's about Youth Art Month, and in the course of it they like to name an Artist of the Year from the community, and this time that's me.  So they won't miss me much.

So stitching a nice small lightweight piece is good.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Stitching Capers

Great meeting today of the local chapter of embroiderers, with a new project, yes, another one!  this was very counter intuitive for me, requiring counting and planning and care, and all those things so foreign to my art nature, but it was fun and the time zoomed by.

This is a project, small, blessedly, named Madrigal. Well, they had me at the name, as a former madrigal singer in my misspent youth, and this one involves not only gold thread, but beads, too!  and the silence as the company concentrated fiercely was impressive.  I didn't get enough completed to show you, but here's the general idea, and some of the participants at work.