Wednesday, July 22, 2009

gasp! some art for a change.

I've put the last of the hand stitching into Gates of Grace and I'm happy, for once, at how the machine stitching and hand work came together this time. Usually, it's an all or nothing proposition for me. Now I have to give some thought about backing and finishing the edge. I was going to mount this one on a canvas but handling it all this time has given me second thoughts. I don't even want to iron it because I don't want to lose the dimensional quality it's come by from layering six or more separate pieces of fabric. There is a discussion going on the SAQA list at the moment about quilts that suffer from the wavies looking unprofessional. I disagree. No one asked me but when I've seen pieces like that on exhibition I'm reminded in a nice way that a.these are quilts and, b. these are pieces of art made from cloth and, c.beating cloth into two dimensional submission is not part of what I'm looking for in fiber art, mine or anyone Else's. You can block a piece until the cows take up the bagpipes but temperature, humidity and handling are going to have their way with textile to some degree unless you mummify it with plastic or nail it down to canvas and wood. It's just cloth being true to it's reason for being. It was originally designed to live, breath, flex and conform to a three dimensional purpose. I like to let it be once I'm done fooling with it. addendum - see the side bar for two auspicious and delicious cards I pulled to contemplate this day.


  1. Exactly, Deb. I purposely encourage my fiber art, often transparent, to interact with the environment. I want light to illuminate it from the front, the back, and to go through it. I want it to look different when the sun streams through it, or when, at night, interior lights reflect off the surface. I like air currents to move the piece, changing it's appearance as it does. I prefer this interaction to a static piece of art, most of the time. I like the life a piece has when it is always a bit different, depending on the environment. Rosemary

  2. Such renegades we are. Your piece in the SAQA journal was gorgeous, btw.
    Are those french seams?

  3. Anonymous8:21 PM

    to put it bluntly i don't give a rat's ass about exhibitions and the wavies, cloth is alive.

  4. sorry, that was me . jude

  5. Having finished my last two labour intensive with raw edged backing and letting all the stitches show and threads dangle, i say YEAH! Testify :}

  6. Yeah, we're renegades, all right. Thanks for the compliment on "Blue" in the SAQA journal. Yes, those are French seams, Rosie's version. It was inspired by Korean Pojagi, but I didn't want to do hand rolled, hand stitched seams, so I did a modified French seam. I know you'll ask, so I'll just tell you. I make a fairly wide seam, different for each seam to give some variety. I press the seam open, so in a blue and green piece stitched together, the blue lays on the blue, the green on the green, I fold each part of the seam back on itself, press, and stitch with matching thread. This gives a great line, and deepens the value of the sheer in the fold area. Your piece in this blog is gorgeous. I love the shapes. Rosemary

  7. I agree wholeheartedly. I made a fall for the lectern at church on a backing of linen and it varies from extremely puckered to moderately wavy..depending on the humidity. Its not a quilt but even so.
    This piece of yours is beautiful.


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