Saturday, July 8, 2017

Trying a Different medium , Painted Cookies

I have to start this by sending apologies to Maggie Austin Cake.
After taking one of her  two day workshops on classic sugar roses and
reading her book, (Maggie Austin Cake: Artistry and Technique)
 I thought the easiest thing for me to try alone 
were the painted cookies that she so elegantly designed.

 I decided to stay away from Maggie's lovely Impressionist
painted cookies. So, for my first crude designs
 and not knowing how the few colors and petal dusts I had would work 
I plunged into trying to paint trees and then a simple blossom.
 Feeling the first attempts were messy and bland .........I wanted color. 
Remembering Gene Davis' striped paintings I tried mixing bright colors. 
Using some old paste food color I had I soon discovered that 
they take forever to dry and keep coming off on my hands and clothes.
What a mess. Maggie mentioned using Vodka and paper towels help erase.
I erased a lot over the weeks I worked on these cookies.
 Continuing into thinking of simple styles by past artists I thought, 
"AHA, Jackson Pollack and his drip paintings"
The only trouble was I could not get the paint to drip
 so ended up just scribbling with layers of color.
Then remembering the pointillists....tried dots without a design in mind.
 This group of 4 cookies are designs that I let develop.
You have to let each color dry before continuing although
 I tried to watercolor with vodka and some colors ran together.
 Tried Munch's Scream a couple of times and 
ended up erasing a lot of the dark color I had layered 
that kept running together.
I had invested in two black food pens that were not 
fine tips so used a lot of black by accident.
 Just playing with colors and trying light and dark shades.
Each cookie is approximately 3 inches in diameter.
These are sugar cookies (recipe in Maggie's book)
and covered with white fondant before the painting began.
I had bought some wafer paper and tried steaming it as Maggie mentioned. 
Instead I found that painting it gave some 3D shape. 
I drew on the wafer paper, colored it and then cut it out. 
Using piping gel I glued the small images to the painted cookies.

I have a lot to learn and need a lot more equipment 
and certainly more colors and pens and time.
For now I will go back to textiles and using some thread
 and fabric, work again with a medium I know a bit more about.
But, this has been a fun adventure and who knows what else may happen.

Friday, June 30, 2017

Current exhibits in Utah and Virginia

Opening today, June 30, 2017, at the Southern Utah Museum of Art
13 S 300 W,  Cedar City, Utah 84720
PATHFINDERS: New Territories Exhibition


 I have two artworks included in this beautiful new contemporary art museum.
CONTEMPLATING CHAOS is 40 by 57 inches.
 A detail of the center panel above. 

Below:
HEAD FOR THE HILLS
23 by 11 inches
 a detail focused on the Corvette.


Another exhibit opening this week( June 29 to August 6, 2017) 
is at the Atheneum on Prince Street in Alexandria, VA
This show is titled PAIRS: Fiber Art from New Image Artists
I have three pairs in this show.
A CASUALTY OF TIME . Individual pieces are 13 by 11 inches each 
Below is a detail of the right embroidery

Below: VOCAL SILENCE
 Each of the pairs is 14 by 11 inches
Below,  detail of the left panel.

Below: SILVER LINE; Outside (left) and Inside (right)
 Each Silver Line pair measures 8 by 8 inches
There are 13 artists in the New Image group and all will be showing their Pairs.
The Opening Reception is July 9 from 4 till 6 PM and the 
Gallery Artist Talks are on August 6 at 3 PM.

Atheneum, 201 Prince Street, Alexandria
703-548-0035

Thursday, May 25, 2017

New York Adventures

Going to the Met on Fifth Avenue always has unusual and surprising exhibits. 
The Rei Kawakubo, Comme Des Garcons show was a total surprise 
as I have not always been a fan of her designs. 
This show titled Art of the In-Between was indeed 
so full of so many wonderful uses of fabric and more, 
I am so glad to have seen it.

 Absence/Presence, 2 dimensions, 
Autumn/winter and Spring/summer 1997
 High above our heads were these Clustered Beauties.
 Details from 1983, 1998, 2009, 2010 and some from 2013
I wanted to list all of the titles and dates
and there was so much more material to read.
 Ballerina Motorbikes from the 4 seasons, 2005
 I wanted this one because I liked the back.
 Abstract/ Excellence, Spring/summer, 2004.
This was a group of skirts and I never could 
find out what the tops were made of.
 Good Taste/Bad Taste, Autumn/winter, 2008-9
 Broken Bride, 2005-6
 Broken Bride, Autumn/winter, the other side of the exhibit.
 18th Century Punk and  Delinquent, 2010
 I was fascinated with the manipulation of 
the bands of fabric on the model on the left.
 Life/Loss, Ceremony of Separation, Autumn/winter, 2015-16
 Object/Subject, Body Meets Dress, 1997
(details)  Dress Meets Body, Spring/summer, 1997
 East/West, Cubism, 2007
 Lost Empire, Inside decoration, 2010-11
 Child/Adult, Not Making Clothing, 2014
with a self fabric stuffed bear.
 Male/Female, The Infinity of Tailoring, 2013-14
 Not Making Clothes, Spring/summer 2014
With sculptural head pieces designed by Julien d'Ys
 Beautiful/Grotesque, Monster, 2014-15.
I was fascinated with the heavy lacy leggings 
but we were looking at sweaters with holes.

 War/Peace, Blood and Roses, 2015
 Details, above, of so many unusual manipulated fabrics.
There was so much more to see and 
I did go back to look at it twice, feeling that I still hadn't seen all of it.
The all white sets were remarkable 
with high and low views of the sculpture and fashion
and so much more to absorb. But, the Met had several other 
exhibits I wanted to see so this is all for today.


Wednesday, April 19, 2017

A change of style ?

Wanting to make a change in my work, 
if not style, then in the method of working with fabric and thread.
 Looking at my sketch books I had always made quick realistic
sketches of flowers, before embroidering them.
These cone flowers were in a pot as I drew them.
 Looking at all sides of some zinnias on this page.
But I wanted to change........
 I started putting down ideas for non-realistic flowers in a sketch book.
 Starting with bright colors and fabrics I began creating these stylized flowers.
 Since I have always loved the Dutch and Flemish still-lifes 
I planned to create my own non-realistic version of a classic.
Several insects had to be included.
 And branches with leaves. Leaves are sewn through 
the center vein so may stand out from the dark background.
 I broke with my non-realistic idea when it came to the vase 
and embroidered an image of a vase that I own.
I did not add shadows, though, so it is flat.
 The vase needed to sit on something besides a table 
so, I stacked some books and worked out fictitious titles for them.
 My still-life needed a plate and a bowl to add 
some balance to the whole composition.
The result is titled Satirical Stillness.
It is approximately 44 by 54 inches.
The falling leaves can be changed in positions.
I doubt my friends will think I succeeded in creating 
a non-realistic image, but I was trying. 
Probably this idea will not become a series.

Friday, March 31, 2017

From drawings to a stained glass window

Late last year a friend, Shirley Derrick, called me as she had remembered 
that I had drawn hands of many and various people for a large art work.
I kept a sketch book with many hands, drawn with colored pencils, in it. 
She was designing a window for a remembrance 
of her late husband, Lonny. 
It would be then translated into a stained glass window 
that would be the centerpiece in an entry alcove of
the Bethesda United Methodist Church in Bethesda, Maryland.

 Shirley looked through my sketch book and found two hands that she liked.
 I must admit that these were rather crude drawings of my husband, 
Clark's hands, but would be the forms that could be created in stained glass.
I remember drawing them with the palms up.
She decided that to fit the theme the hands  would be rotated.
She took the two drawings to the stained glass artisans .
 And, this is the result. The quotation at the bottom says, 
"We Are God's Hands"
The room is quite light but I was using my phone 
to get the image and was pleased to see the sun shining through.
The window is about 5 feet high. 
I was pleased to feel that a tiny bit of my work was
used to create this beautiful stained glass window
in memory of Lonny Derrick.