Saturday, 29 March 2014

And then it rained ...

Decided to come home from Brisbane a day early yesterday - and it turned out to be a good decision. The Cunningham Highway had been cut in a few places and paddock after paddock looked like the muddy detritus from 2012 floods. Cattle up to their udders and underarms (?) in muddy flowing water. Another group on tippy-hooves in the far corner of yet another paddock.  It is an eerie experience to drive along a highway with floodwater lapping at either side of the bitumen. We had  170 mm  (about 6 1/2 inches) of rain overnight after months of absolutely nothing. Home again through the Pastoral Company paddocks - I stopped off at the bridge on the way to see all the trees that are still coming downstream - nothing can take away from the beautiful new Villis bridge, or the old one which was retrieved from the river bed and now re-purposed at a neighbour's place as a gully crossing ... I guess everybody benefits.

Saturday, 22 March 2014

Dye catchers

 I was gifted some dye catchers by Sue Dennis a few weeks ago - interesting textile that feels like suede without the nap - perhaps chamois is a better description. Sue used them when dyeing fabrics - they've captured her dyeing life quite well. I started stitching, then printing. layering, cutting and stamping - followed by more stitching. I think the "wrong" side" is far more interesting than the "right side" on so many levels. This is an experimental piece - while I ponder the next iteration. Thank you Sue.

Sunday, 16 March 2014

There's colour in them layers

Had a great weekend at the Boonah Guides quilt show with Mel Forrest - and spent a lot of time talking about One of Many  featured in the latest issue of Down Under Textiles.  Layers of a different kind this afternoon as we missed a storm heading out to the coast and Brisbane. Great light show!

A bridge (not) too far

We're getting close to rejoining the mainland - in a few short weeks our 13 months of bridge-less-ness will come to an end - at least the drought has been good for something. I will actually miss the magic of two cranes dancing, their ballet with concrete and rock. Our neighbours have been fantastic letting us cross through their properties this past year - we'll always be grateful.

Saturday, 1 March 2014

Open Studios 2014 @ Aliquilts

We're getting ready for Open Studios again - this year we're sharing Aliquilts Studios with artist-in-residence Mel Forrest. I've already started preparations for our demonstrations! We'll create a community cloth - comprised of the marks left by visitors to the studio over the weekend of 24 and 25 May 2014. Print, dye, stitch - it's all possible for visitors and workshop participants alike. We'll have more information available at the Boonah Quilt Show on Friday 14th and Saturday 15th March - drop into the Cultural Centre in High Street, Boonah to see wonderful quilts, demonstrations by me and Mel and, of course, get your Open Studios booklet for the 2014 program of events.

Out of the ordinary

Much of the past month has been spent on my entry for "Redirecting the Ordinary", a Studio Art Quilt Associates exhibition being curated by Alicia Merrett. The end product of many months of exploring the concept of "ordinary" and "extraordinary"  came to quite sudden fruition a few short weeks ago.  There had been many iterations preceding the exclamation of "it's finished!". I had a really clear idea of what I would do and proceeded along that path in fits and starts. There were many re-visitations to the visual diary to play with words, ideas and even the odd tea bag. Then came the "aha" moment somewhere between trusting an intuition and getting "real" with my work. That "aha" moment led to four furious days over two weekends to create something that has little resemblance to what was originally envisaged. That it has now been entered for jurying into an exhibition is a bonus - simply putting my work forward is reward enough - these moments in creating are exquisitely felt -and  a huge part of  the commitment to make great art. Thank you Neil Gaiman!

Below: an idea put aside - the ordinariness of tea - stitching tea bag papers to make a cloth comprised of friendships, dripping with conversation, writing the stories of tea and times shared.