Friday, 30 November 2007

Rochester Cathedral Inspiration, update on house and what I received in the post.

While I'm waiting for the electrician I thought I'd show some of the highlights from Rochester Cathedral (for me anyway) when we went a couple of weeks ago to see Cas homes 'Traces' installation. Along with many quilters, I have a fondness for old tiles and made a double sized bed quilt based on medieval tiles from the British Museum. It took me 7 years! Perhaps I'll put a picture of it up for my next post.
The house is gradually coming together - yesterday the carpet-layer and the plumber were in action, today the last of the electrical work. The scaffolding was also removed but as it had to be carried through the house and no dust sheets were available, the carpet is a mess!! Steve the boss came to look at this morning and has agreed to split the cost on cleaning. This weekend will be spent on shifting boxes yet again so that another room can be carpeted and on putting up curtains . An Ikea trip might be in order to buy some blinds.
Gilbert sent me the lost partner of my bee earrings by special delivery - I think he realised soon after I'd left the show as the parcel crossed in the post with my letter, so not lost after all!! In the same post were our passports with visas for Iran. I had to have a photo taken specially for it with a headscarf on (the photo booth kept telling me it wasn't suitable for a passport as hair was covered-I know). It looks even worse as a photocopy in the visa, especially with some strange blue blotches on. Not one to share I think.

Sunday, 25 November 2007

World Record for Lost Earring

Had a busy but productive weekend : visiting the farmers Market ( leg of lamb currently roasting-yum); buying set of 3 phones so we have a chance of answering one before caller rings off ;excellent pork chops at The Fox with Sue and Peter (thanks to Independent Vouchers ) ; ordering a new sofa from Sofa Workshop (Carrie in Cranberry) and cleaning up some of the mess from the builders - painters finished on Friday but still other work to be finished off.
As a treat visited British Crafts show at Chiswick Town Hall , lots of nice things to admire and Ian bought me a lovely pair of earrings from Gilbert Macmanus - reticulated oxidised silver bees with freshwater pearls. Being near the end of the day and probably his last customers we had an interesting conversation about gardens, allotments and composting.
Alas when we got home , there was only 1 earring in the box....... - whether it was left on the stand or lost at the bus stop I don't know.
I shall ring Gilbert tomorrow - I've bought earrings from him before and he was very good at making a replacement set for a pair I lost/was stolen in Greece. I must say I've never lost an earring quite so quickly before!! Ian has said he will pay for a repalcement bee - what an understanding husband I have.

Monday, 19 November 2007

Traces in Rochester

Traces by Cas Holmes

Had a expedition to Rochester on Saturday with Sue, Peter and Ian to see an exhibition/installation of work by Cas Holmes in Rochester Cathedral and Art Gallery. Many of her pieces incorporated the bright colours and motifs experienced on an Indian exchange visit.
Sue and I did a mixed media class with Cas in July at the Cowslip Workshops in Launceston, a busy 3 days of sunprinting, monoprinting, momogami, printing, painting and stitching on paper and fabric. In the exhibition were a couple of pieces based on Marigolds that Cas was working on during the workshop, using them to demonstrate techniques -it was interesting to see how they had developed. We had also forgotten just how complex her pieces are , with layers and layers of fabrics and papers stitched into and peeled back and rubbings of woodblocks.

Marigold by Cas Holmes

In the crypt, displayed against the stained glass windows, there was also a couple of evocative pieces made collaboratively with a community group using recycled Remembrance Day poppies trapped in tea bag paper , with rubbings of war memorials.

We finished the day at the largest secondhand bookshop in Europe - I bought a 1963 book on TieDye with very clear diagrams of shibori techniques. Ian shocked us by buying nothing!

Wednesday, 14 November 2007

Reclining Figure

This reclining figure was the first of the Henry Moore sculptures to arrive at Kew. It was quite a sight to see it installed and it certainly has an initial impact being placed with the Palm House behind. It doesn't have the same wow factor to me as the bronzes (I love their texture and colour)

I used 'invert' in Photoshop to swap the tones round - it looks more monumental in greys than white but the background isn't so interesting

As a change, for this 'Mini-Moore' I printed on blue grey background and stitched around the shape rather than within - when you see the sculpture you're very aware of the texture of the background as in itself it is so smooth.

The builders are accelerating their pace - Ian and I had to move the furniture from one room to another yesterday evening so they could strip the wallpaper today. Sofa wrestling is not my idea of a fun time

Sunday, 11 November 2007

How Shall I Stitch This?

I've been using Photoshop to desaturate some of the photos of 'Large 2 Forms' sculpture and then printing on bubble jetset soaked pieces of indigo fabric with some very interesting effects.
I'm wondering now how to stitch it. I'd initially thought of following the contours of the sculpture but I think it requires a more delicate approach. Maybe seed stitching the background?

Wednesday, 7 November 2007

Moore Monochrome

Finally feel I'm getting somewhere in my 'Mini- Moore' pieces. The difficulties are in transfering something of the quality of the solidity and multi faceted nature of the sculptures into a 2-dimensional form. Simplicity is the key. I've been looking at the drawings of Henry Moore to see how he tackled it - the next challenge I think is looking at line and shading in stitch to suggest form

Sunday, 4 November 2007

Autumn Colour at Kew

A lovely sunny crisp Sunday - Ian and I went to Kew to have a proper look at the sculptures ( after lunch at the Greyhound). The gardens were heaving with people - initially when you're trying to take good photos it was a bit annoying when people got in the way but gradually you accept it and then enjoy their enthusiasm. Children in particular are irrestistably drawn to climb (its not allowed) and pat and stroke and run through the larger ones . The autumn colour is spectacular and really compliments the bronzes