I haven’t been posting much here as I share my quilt and sewing work regularly and often on Instagram (@quiltinginthefog). Here are some of my latest art quilts:
This piece (18” x 18””) was juried into the ArtSpan 2021 Juried Benefit Auction held on April 24th. It was a miniature version of my “Mosaic Improv” (54” x 54”) quilt that was part of the de Young Museum Open juried exhibition last fall.
Swirl is a quilt I started years ago from leftover pieces of quilts gifted to others. The variegated pieces and wonky cuts made the resulting piece warped and uneven. I tried to “quilt it it flat” but did it badly and, well, it just looked awful and was not at all what I’d imagined in my head. I put it away for years and every once in a while would pull it out to lament what I’d hoped would be a treasure. I loved the colors and the shape, and decided it was time to try again and to go for it. I spent hours (days?) picking out all the dense quilting stitches to free the top. I thought there might be a way to salvage it if I added more pieces to surround the original and then stretch it on my new-to-me old longarm machine to densely quilt it flat. It worked! I can’t stop looking at it. I learned that a seam ripper can be your friend if you have some Netflix to stream. I was also reminded how much fun I have with make-it-up-as-you-go improvisational quilting.
Which led me to…
In working towards creating a cohesive body of thematic work, I made this piece to hang as part of a triptych. Each is 36” square.
I take such joy in repurposing fabric from clothing. I’ve used my downtime during the pandemic to clean out closets, “get real” about what I really like to wear and will be wearing in the future, and donating clothing to Goodwill for better purposes. I set aside a set of linen dresses that I’d worn out, or just didn’t fit or look right on me, and cut them into various long strips and pieces and began to put back together as a quilt. The result is the Five Dresses quilt (56″x79″). Once pieced, it was quite saggy and droopy. Before quilting, I heavily spray basted it (in my backyard – why haven’t I been doing this back there all these years and instead cramming myself in my enclosed garage?) and then densely quilted it. I love the process of just sewing strips and pieces together without much though except for trying to get light/dark variation, and using up as much of the fabric as possible. Using what I had on hand, the colors just turned out to work together. It definitely has the feelings of Gees Bend and Rose Lee Tompkins. I’m looking around our closets to see what else I might repurpose – nothing is safe!
It’s been more than six months since my last post here, having largely moved to Instagram. What an unimaginable world of change: pandemic lockdown and spread with hundreds of thousands dead and many more sick, an economic freefall, political unrest and election activism, protests for social justice and change, fires across my state and oppressively smoky air. And of course the resulting changes and effects on our family, knowing that for an overwhelming number in our community and country the multitude of tragedies has caused complete devastation. We are still in the midst of it all, and yet have so far to go.
During this distressing time, a light in my life (and, I admit, my lifetime) has been juried acceptance of my Improve Mosaic quilt into the de Young Museum Open Exhibition. It is thrilling to have been selected as one of the 877 works of art from over 11,000 entries across the Bay Area for the reopening of the museum!
Additional icing on the cake is appearing on the inside cover of the Fall 2020 edition of Fine Arts Magazine!
It was a joy to return to the de Young Museum on Tuesday, recently opened since closing in March. The show opens to the public today and will run through January 3rd. It is truly an honor to be among such talented, beauty and inspiration! My heart is full.