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Category Archives: Residency 2017

for my next trick

Working on the commissioned piece “Tabula Memoria” has taken much of my time over the past 6 months, in thinking and in doing, not leaving much wiggle room for other projects. It’s time to rev up and get something done for the end of “res” exhibit!

On my work blog (private), i’ve been looking at photos of older work, from sketch to sample to finished pieces, and finally decided i just might do something with this from 2012. The original figure was sketched out and used in 96 (?) as applique on a vest, back in the days when my business was wearable art. (I had intended to do this from years ago, but the fabric processes that i envisioned for it just aren’t co-operating!)

Given that i have a definite timeline, (the exhibit takes place at ACAD from Aug 27 to September something….) this piece will be MUCH smaller than works done lately 😉  I’ve bogged myself down in some sense with large expanses, and while i love the finished work, i’m going to go back to more intimate sizes. For years i was afraid to go big, but i think it’s time to be reasonable in terms of what i am able to accomplish—size does matter as they say, but there’s no proscribed acreage for successful work.

 

euc in the house

I missed a week at ACAD–summer holidays with the Greyman, and some serious Garden Hard time, both necessary things, and also time to think on things. If the school studio is too cool now for my favourite processes, what else can i do?

My favourite eucalyptus in “in season” again–that means it’s an import, as it just doesn’t grow in Alberta! One of the perks of working in the fffFlower Mines means access to things that just aren’t available in my garden or neighbourhood. There *are* certain “go-to’s” i can pick fresh, but the majority of plant materials that give satisfying results are neither “native” nor zone 3 hardy.

Yesterday i stitched in the home studio while these were percolating.

Two euc “trees” 🙂

 

LOVE this silk:

 

It was a good day.

 

 

 

 

the heat is on

Not really. The heat is OFF, damn it.

My third “batch” of fabrics are totally disappointing. The studio now is air conditioned, so things dry out much too faster. Every previous year i’ve been in there, i’ve sweltered and dripped, brought in fans while i was working, and didn’t worry about amounts of water on things. This year, HA. I’ve had to dump pints and quarts on things to make them work. Day three results are now actually day four results, because i had to leave things for 48 hours instead of the usual 24, and they were still SHIT.

Sigh. There’s going to be a lot of overdyeing. The largest piece was supposed to be for my res end exhibit piece, but i’ll have to rethink that now. I am reminded of my first res tip back in 2009: “Make a plan for what you’ll do, half it–and half it again”……………..

I guess i’ll be doing the majority of this technique at home in a hot sunny back 40, fighting the wind and bird poo instead! But there are other things i can do at the school stoodio, so with three months in this res, i’ll be trying a few different things. I have time to experiment and mess around, refine other processes, and just get dirty.

 

My deadline for Tabula Memoria is looming, the end of July, and while i have put in time with it, and am actually at a point where there technically is little left to do on it, it still needs to be worked on. (Phew, that’s one hell of a run on sentence…) I’ve been taking it with me to the fffFlower Mines (Day Job), and to the residency, so i can work on it—while doing the hurry up and wait thing!

The moon area was completed several weeks ago, and the standing figure is almost finished this week.

I can’t attach either figure until the other stitching is all done, because i don’t want to snag anything.

I started shopping around for a suitably sized stretched canvas to mount it on. The variance in prices is astounding! I’ve been quoted from $60 (seems way too low!) to $168 (way too high!) for a uniquely sized 41×43 frame, and might just end up building it myself. I do a wrap around technique, so though the actual work started at 48×46, stitch “shrinkage” had to be accounted for as well as the wrap around.

 

 

res exhibit ideas

At the end of every Contextural residency, we have an exhibit of work (hopefully) done through the summer. (Some people put whatever they like in, done wherever and whenever, which to me is pointless…….but we won’t go there.)

Being as this is the 10th anniversary for Contextural, and even though i’ve only been a member since 2009 (though i missed one year), i thought i’d look at my own work done 10 years ago.

Seriously? Very little i did then is show worthy really. Futzing about with mixed media, extraneous details, overloaded with technique and colour, the only value they have now is as samples and whatnottodo-whatthehellwasithinking’s! ICK. Fortunately (?), most of them are photos only, lost, tossed or given and flooded away (2013), so i don’t have to store them 🙂

But i did find this:

Above, the finished page, below, in progress shots:

A page i had done for an international fabric art journal exchange, i could work with this. I can incorporate the indigo, ecoprinting, rust and potassium permanganate and create something new. Looking back can take you ahead.

 

day three res

Of course, usually by the time i post, it’s another day, in fact two days past, but………. This is part of the game, of what i do, hurry up and wait, no instant gratification, nightmares (yes!), anticipation and hoofies crossed SO tight.

(These are a mix of the two day’s results.)

Most are detail shots as that’s where the devil beauty is.

I have to start thinking about what will come of all this for the end of residency exhibition. This is Contextural’s 10th anniversary, but the theme is open this time, as we all work so differently. And i also realized that this is my 6th residency! (Although my very first one in 2009 was a self induced bust….i signed up for 3 months then too, all excited and drooling, and showed up TWO days, because i had NO idea what i wanted to do!!!!!!)

EDIT: got my idea/s last night as i was falling asleep 🙂

On Monday, i’ll be firing up an indigo vat there (two at home already, but impossible for me to transport by bus and train ), because, because, believe it or not, OMG, there are some participants who have never done indigo!

PS The rabbit showed up again, and was offended because i had nothing Rabbity to share, and YAWNED at me! Henceforth, he shall be Paul Bunyawn, ’cause he is a big rabbit 🙂

 

 

 

day two res

Because Day One is always setting up, thinking, doing what you did last year (as a warm up) and finding out what you’ve forgotten 🙂

Bear in mind that these are all photographed wet, and will dry lighter. Still, i’m damned pleased.

All in the dryer now, with more, and will cure before they go in the shop.

And this is my Lunch Buddy:

 

res starts today

Three months this time, lots of fabulous fabrics to create, and lots of stitching planned.

Previous years: