Wednesday, August 12, 2009

ugly, continued

Tonight's output, done in the space of an hour or so. Whither? We'll see. Right now, it is too predictable and boring for words:something I hope never to be. It's late: I was delayed with the cutting/sewing/blogging by a phone call from a professor at a midwestern university who reads my blog and thinks my philosophy of "you can't make a mistake - just redo it till you like it" is something his students should hear about. LOL - I should have suggested to him that I come as a guest lecturer one of these days. Well, maybe if he is reading this, he will think about it.
It was beyond hot today and my studio air conditioner was not cooperating. I left earlier than I had intended to -- but there will be an additional a/c put back in the hallway and that should help. It certainly made a difference last year. In the meantime, I did some work at the computer and on the wall. Funny that I seem to be working in a similar palette at home and at work. One that I don't even like. Hmmm..what does it all MEAN? (probably nothing). I have something in mind that is inspiring me but I simply can't capture it. I tried several years ago and failed, so now I am trying again. I am not hopeful. On another subject, Elizabeth Barton's post today certainly makes some salient points. But as someone who works from/is inspired by the cloth, my take is different. Too tired to go on but you all who posted to the QuiltArt list should have posted your comments, as well, on Elizabeth's blog. Good discussion! She is always stimulating. Off to bed - I have a funeral to attend tomorrow morning in Queens, NY. Can I wrinkle my nose and be there without having to navigate the GW and Triboro bridges? Guess not.


Terry Grant said...

Rayna, Elizabeth's post made me think of you, but not as someone "seduced" by your pretty fabric--rather the example of pushing it and infusing it with meaning and intention.

Gerrie said...

So glad you posted about this. I wondered where you were when this discussion started. Now, I am having angst over being one of those seduced by their pretty fabric except that most of the time I don't create "pretty" fabric.

Eva said...

I agree that it is hard to wrestle with the piece of squares. Maybe because your approach to composition is so different: You arrange pieces and rearrange them and let the parts correspond until they melt into a "whole" thing. In this case, the melting process is blocked. I can still see the jewels, I mean those distinctly hand printed or discharged parts. They seem to me like immigrants who do not properly speak the language and so they have to accept jobs way below their academical grade.
I'd cut them out and start something new with them.

The comments on the posting by Elizabeth Barton were very interesting. She seems to have moved something.

There have been two general ways to start a quilt. The traditional way was to create something needed and useful and to salvage the scarce material that was there. The challenge was to make it look beautiful in adequate time.
Piecing is a bit like cooking a meal out of leftovers.
The opposite way is to use the traditional tools and material to express a story in the familiar language of quiltmaking. This will be an optical piece and be placed hanging from a wall.
And there is the third approach: I love to touch the material and I love to quilt and embroider. I'll do something that keeps my fingers busy and satisfies my need for luscious colours and material.
And it could be a reason for me to hang around in shops and buy beautiful fabric and threads.
OMG this is sooo tempting!
That's why I imposed the law on myself to use discarded fabric. The second law is to think: Is this work necessary? Do I need the thing I create? Or is it a story telling piece in which the use of fabric has a specific information or characteristics I cannot find in other materials?
Art quilts still have warm and useful textile bed covers as their ancestors. You can't help thinking at least: "This is a fabric piece." And this very thought is a story.

If not, I paint a picture. Form follwos function.

tiedyejudy said...

Rayna, first off... I like the piece you have been working on! You have introduced a complexity in your design that wasn't there when you started.
As for Elizabeth's post, I'm torn... the last piece I just finished was made of hand-dyed fabric, and my sole reason for making it was to use some of that fabric, and to create a piece that was shaped other than rectangle or square. From Elizabeth's perspective, that would be a poor reason to create a quilt. I say, if there is an itch, I'm going to scratch it! And personally, I'm not too concerned if it meets anyone else's standards or criteria.

Nina-Marie said...

I got a kick out of the title of this blog. You know I just spent a week at QBL doing something that I really think is ugly - I'm quite sure everyone was tired of me whining about it. I guess - I too - don't mind making a "dog" now and again - just want it to be a pretty dog :))

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