Sunday 31 May 2009

Tuesday 26 May 2009

Here in Colorado

Morning feeding for the humming birds at Pitkin Road, Paonia, the home of Rain and Gary Klepper, my hosts for the week.The Black Canyon on the Gunnison River - tributary of the Colorado River that runs through the Grand Canyon.Exploring the vertical cliffs at the Black Canyon with Rain Klepper, my host and Distant Stitch student at the workshop Paonia, Colorado.

Aspen trees

Saturday 16 May 2009

'Tread Softly'

Close-up detail below.
It's been a busy time for deadlines to produce my own work. I've just sent off 'Tread Softly' as a possible entry to the Pfaff Art Embroidery competition. [I was one of the finalists last year with a large piece using a surface of broken egg shells called 'Break an Egg to Save a Sailor' - see blog entry two years ago.]

The theme of this competition is 'Landscape, Let's Travel'. My piece is made of small fragments of personal photos and fabrics, stitched together to form a pathway, strewn with daisies. Water-soluble machine stitched 'feet', lightly walk over the path. The words 'tread softly' form the lacy stitching on the feet.
This quote from W B Yeats from his poem 'He Wishes for the Cloths of Heaven' seem to echo my thoughts; "I have spread my dreams under your feet. Tread softly because you tread on my dreams."

'Humming the Air'

A recently completed textile 'Humming the Air' will be included in the 62Group exhibition 'Bending the Line' to celebrate the bicentenary of the poet Alfred Lord Tennyson, at the Hub, Sleaford, Lincolnshire, 11th July to 6th September 2009. The photograph is not a good one I'm afraid as it was done in a rush before I had to pack it up to catch the carrier office before it closed! Last minute again! I hope you can see it well enough to make out that it is constructed from multiple layers of tracing paper shapes, previously machine stitched to make lots of perforations. The lines of the holes spell out the letters of its title. Threads were then threaded through some of the holes to string them all together. The idea is to make the words appear as if they are falling out of the wall panel, which has photocopies of pages from Tennyson's poems.

For those who might be interested in the meaning of this piece I need to explain the term 'ekphrasis'; this is a term from Greek rhetoric that originally meant the intense description of a thing, conjured so vividly in words as to appear before the mind's eye. Andrew Motion uses the phrase 'humming the air' to describe how poets should use this to make words appear to lift off the page when writing poetry.