Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Exhibit 2016

I have a definite date for a solo exhibit at the Library gallery for June 20l6, which is not as far in the future as you might think, considering how much there is to do between now and then.

But as usual, the definite deadline has unleashed a ton of new ideas, mostly about dyeing and stitching and generally exciting sorts of work I haven't done before, in addition to the doorway series, which has to be finished, and the transparency series which has to be started...and so on, and more!

But I have the great luxury of prioritizing  commitments and postponing obligations in order to keep the flow in the studio and avoid  disturbing that process. Once a concept is established, your mind is freer to roam, but at this point, not so. 

And the summer weather is the best for the dyeing process, by a long shot, for gathering materials and for making the dyebaths.

So today I did more work on the chrysanthemum piece, which might end up being a giant applique on another bigger work, see what happens when your mind gets revved up,  and backed two of the doorway pieces with dyed linen.  

I'm showing you one of them, two views, the first lying on the floor to get the whole thing in one frame, the other closer up so you can see a bit better how the chains hang down nicely when it's on the wall, click to see a bit better. I like very much the way the chains cast their own shadow on the linen. The linen backing is not as pale as in the pix, and does work really well with the general feel of the woven, stitched, beaded, chained, trapunto, goldworked, image transferred, pollyputaketlon piece...

-- and made a gallon, literally, of Japanese red maple dye and a quart of yellow onionskin dye.  This had the excellent effect of removing all the bags of dried material littering up the kitchen, and reducing them to a liquid most of which is now in the freezer.
I had the epiphany, not unlike when I started to cut my own hair, decades ago, that you don't have to do everything at once!  I can make the dye and store it till I'm ready to use it, what a concept. 
The same way I realized I could cut just bits of my hair as needed, no need to work on the whole thing.  I had just gone along at first with the hairdressing model where they have to do it all, shampoo, style, cut and ruin your hair all in one appointment, all the while complaining about how difficult curly hair is and how they didn't train for this...

And the books on dyeing talk of a headlong rush to make the dye and use it without taking a breath, mainly because of the exigencies of producing a complete book!  

This gives me time to plan and study Dharma Traders' offerings of silk and linen fabrics and look in the studio for stretchers that will be big enough to accommodate bigger piecesand generally proceed in a more sane and orderly fashion than I usually do.

And hope that everyone in my rl will understand and remember I'm a working artist, not a retired lady!  I taught two workshops this summer, one small private one to come, and they are so far removed from my own work that it takes time to come back to what I need to be doing. 

Great fun, and I loved doing it, but I must do what the radio journalists would call drill down, heh.  Well, at least it's an oil metaphor, not a sports one.


  1. this is stunning. what finishes it off for me are the two pearl beads that are so much large than the rest, and seem to anchor the piece. You have the most wonderful eye for this sort of thing, and this is what poetry is, after all. Put it in, switch things around, put it back, turn it upside down...

  2. the wall hanging has worked so well, best if luck preparing for the exhibition

  3. Oh yes - I do really like this piece (I actually think it might just be my favourite of all that I've seen you do). Us magpies DO like sparkly things!! How I wish I could come to the show, but alas too many miles between us.


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