15 December 2006

Crow at White River Junction

This piece is based on a photo I took in White River Junction, Vermont. The crows in the parking lot were curious but wary of me and my camera. Since crows like to collect things, I've surrounded her some goodies for her stash. I've been wanting to sew bottlecaps onto fabric for a while and finally worked out a process for making that work. The crow is bordered by silver beads.

28 November 2006

The Journal Quilt Book

In each month of 2005, I made a small experimental quilt and reflected on my process in a journal. At the same time there were people from all over the US and in many other countries quilting and reflecting as part of the Journal Quilt Project. In 2006, this multi-faceted creative endeavor was documented in Creative Quilting: The Journal Quilt Project, edited by Karey Bresenhan. I was delighted to find a photograph of my very experimental paper and plastic quilt on page 253. It was great to be part of such a thoughtful and dynamic project and I like knowing that all of those other quilters are out there, stitching up the world.

26 November 2006

Spirits and Shrines

I'm excited to have some work in a show at the Fiber Art Center in Amherst, MA. Small Works: Spirits and Shrines, includes an array of "fiber-related shrines, icons, talismans, amulets" and other mystical works. The opening is from 5:00 - 9:00 on December 7, 2006, during the Amherst Art Walk. Crow in the Mountain, pictured here, is one of the spirit altars I have in the show. There's information on future shows and classes at: www.fiberartcenter.com

25 November 2006

Improvisational Quilt #2

I'm so happy to get this photograph-ed and posted. It's 34 x 33 inches, quite a bit larger than the first in the series. The quilts in this series are all made from a pile of clothes I bought one day at a second-hand store. I plan to keep using this collection of fabric until there's nothing left, as if it was my only source. I love the character of a piece of second-hand fabric. It's already had one set of adventures as a favorite pair of pants or a soft comfy work shirt. Then, a quilter comes along, cuts it up, stitches it together with other bits of someone's history, stuffs it, quilts it and takes its picture.

17 October 2006

Autumn in New England

This week, my husband and I took a little road trip to enjoy some fall color, visit with family and check out a couple of art museums. In White River Junction, Vermont the sumac trees were brilliant reds and yellows. In Brattleboro, Vermont, we had lunch at the Riverview Cafe with a view right down the middle of the river. Next to the door of the cafe these purple asters were blooming, buzzing with a multitude of with bees and six (!) monarch butterflies. What a sight. We went across the street to see the exhibits at the Brattleboro Art Museum in the old train station. They had some really dynamic landscape paintings by Wolf Kahn, who, rumor has it, has also painted the barn at my husband's family homestead. The museum also has an incredible maple tree out front, with enormous brilliant red leaves.
The reason this trip got planned in the first place was that I wanted to see the exhibit of aboriginal women's paintings at the Hood museum in Hanover, New Hampshire. The paintings in Dreaming Their Way are gorgeous and powerful. I wish they were closer to my home. I'd like to go look again and again.

29 September 2006

Improvisational Quilt #1

This quilt was begun this past summer when my husband and I visited a thrift shop in a small town in Ohio. I've always really admired scrap quilts and other kinds of quilts that were made with what was on hand rather than with a set of new fabrics purchased for the purpose of making a quilt. There's something about the ingenuity that goes into using a group of fabrics that 1) had been previously owned and used, 2) came in different weights or materials, 3) came from different people with varying styles and tastes, 4) had been cut and sewn into garments and 5) were all there was. I bought a pile of second-hand clothes with the intention of using them to make small quilted pieces. I wanted to experiment with the limits and inspirations that might come from having a restricted supply of previously cut, sewn and worn fabric. I also planned to work intuitively, cutting mostly without measuring and making decisions about what to add as the quilt developed rather than pre-planning the design. I'm pleased with the energy and playfulness of this piece. It's mostly cotton, 19 x 24 inches. It's interesting to watch the composition of the fabric pile change as I choose to use or avoid various pieces.

27 September 2006

Crow with Heart

The heart carving has found its way into a bunch of new collages, one of which is shown here. Crow has found a four-leaf clover. Another lucky day.

25 September 2006

Buena Suerte

I've been interested in power symbols for a long time. What is it in human beings that makes us want to associate an idea with a particular symbol? Last night I carved this rubber stamp, which includes a whole bunch of wishes for good things. Good luck to you!

22 September 2006

A Rubber Heart

This image, based on an old physiology text, has been hanging around in my mind for a while. This evening, I got it sized up and carved with my trusty linoleum cutter. I think it looks pretty good printed on a nice red cardstock but I may try another version on a finer carving material. I'd like to refine the lines and the shapes of the numbers a bit.

19 September 2006

Coat Hangers and Knitting Needles

I've been feeling really stuck with this piece. It's been hanging half-finished on the wall for months. I finally figured out the words for the last block, finished the last carving, made prints and got all the bits organized. Now, it's ready to quilt. It's really cleared a lot of mental space and made room for some new ideas.

14 September 2006

Spirit Altars

I've been working on trying to articulate just what it is I'm trying to create, The making of images seems to use a different part of my mind than the production of a piece of writing. It's almost like the writer me has to go interview the artist me sometime after the art has been completed to find out what the artist me was intending. I have a long-standing interest in creating images that represent our spiritual searches and sacred connections. My latest pieces are richly detailed, painted and quilted altarpieces to hang alone or include in a larger altar. The images include traditional symbols of luck, love, protection, meditation and earth magic.

They are about:
Communion with the wild things
Connection to all beings
Courage, compassion and good will
Clear visions and sweet dreams
Good luck and best wishes

May all good things come to you.

12 September 2006

Cherries and Abundance

To inaugurate my blog, here's a photo of a small quilted spirit altar. It's a celebration of loving abundance and a crazy cherry print I just bought at the fabric store. This piece has been painted and machine quilted with a bit of handstitching as well.