Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Places Where Astonishment Happens

More on CRAFT.  Terry Grant told us about David Cohen, former director of the Museum of Contemporary Craft in Portland, who said in an interview:

"We wanted to stop thinking of craft as a noun and think about it as a verb."

The writer of the article, Barry Johnson, goes on to say:

"In other words, craft not as a subject to be studied, a category to be defended and defined, but instead as an approach to making things. Our growing DIY and crafting movements are indications that we have missed 'making' on a personal level. Our sudden concern about urban homesteading is related to how we've missed making on the macroeconomic level, too. Maybe when other people make everything you use, something has gone wrong. We talk about this as 'getting back to basics' and I think I detect something puritanical in that phrase, something reductive, instead of an invitation to complexity, to places where astonishment happens."

During our recent discussions I had this poorly formed thought about missing the point that regardless of what the resulting product of art or craft might be, the impulse to make it was probably the same. And how wonderful to describe it as an invitation to "places where astonishment happens."

Sherri Lynn Woods 'Passage Quilts', memorial quilts made from loved ones clothing.

Miniature Knitting, or almost MICROSCOPIC knitting! Amazing. Thanks to the world's hardest working yarn rep!

And now for my own 'astonishments'- First I took a day and finished up the detailing on the two small pieces I made to donate. Still unable to make my new machine do my bidding, I opted for more simple solutions and now both are considered 'quilted', so off they go. Actually I am headed back to Boston this weekend so I can take them with me and get them out of my sight for now.  Below, since you have seen the over views before, they are just there to remind you what I'm talking about, the details appear large and Blogger has screwed up the layout.

While I work on the new DropCloth series, here:

This further explores reuse and recycled art materials, after the dumpster pieces from the last few years.  I have cut up my dropcloth that I use whenever I am doing something that may overspray, especially all the decoupaged dishes from the etsy shop.   There are actually five pieces, each 30" square, but one is currently off the wall being appliqued.   Here is a detail of the top left square, pins still intact and applique not started yet:
The spider print is an experiment on cheesecloth, and the rebar in the top left corner is a photo on linen that I didn't use when I printed it several years ago.  So far my only real problem, other than the balky machine, is the thickness of the painted canvas which is killing my poor fingers with all the hand applique.  But I also know from experience that in a short time I will be toughened up and stitching like a pro.

Oh.  I am a pro.  I forgot.

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