Monday, January 23, 2012
Two more pieces from the Circular Churchyard
(Above: The Urn, Grave Rubbing Art Quilt. 17 1/2" x 18 1/2". Crayon on silk rubbing, vintage crazy quilt block, and assorted buttons from the South Carolina State Mental Hospital. Hand and free motion machine embroidery. Click on image to enlarge.)
Over the past weekend Steve and I drove to Washington, DC via Asheville where we dropped off more of my work at the Grovewood Gallery. It's been represented there for two full years. Yet, it still feels brand new and very exciting every time new work is needed.
(The Urn, reverse. Vintage linens. Click on image to enlarge.)
In the car I stitched on two more miniature sized art quilts made using some of the rubbings from Halloween weekend in Charleston's Circular Churchyard. I've combined these grave rubbings with scraps of vintage crazy quilts. The reverse sides are also made of other vintage textiles ... often the slightly damaged or stained pieces that no one else seems to want.
For The Urn I used a child's or doll's pillow embroidered from a kit. (The inventory numbers were on the edges inside the seams!) While cute, it really wasn't quite large enough on its own. Thus, I dismantled a pair of "tap pants" ... the name of such underclothing after "bloomers" went out of style in the 1920s. (Bloomers generally were crotchless and gathered at the ankle or just below the knee. Tap pants sort of look like baggy Bermuda shorts!) The former underwear was hand embroidered and I tried to show as much of this handwork as possible under the cat pillowcase and as a sleeve for the art quilt.
(Above, before cutting: The 1920s tap pants that became the sleeve and backing for The Urn.)
(Above: Circular Church Angel III. 10 1/2" x 17 3/4". Crayon on silk grave rubbing and vintage quilt scraps. Hand and free motion machine embroidery. Click on image to enlarge.)
I added more handwork to the quilt scraps. On both pieces, I allowed the uneven edges to remain. I don't always feel that perfect "squareness" is important when using antique and vintage material. I like the "as is" look ... the faithfulness to the authentic ... even in its imperfect state.
(Above: Circular Church Angel III. Reverse. Click on image to enlarge.)
For the reverse, I used an old dishtowel and a cotton dinner napkin with shadow embroidery for the sleeve.
While in Washington, DC Steve and I managed to buy two tickets to the Mariinsky Ballet's triple bill in the Kennedy Center. All the performances that week were completely sold out ... not even a few "singles" sprinkled through the rafter section! Yet, a nice lady walked in while we were "begging" at the ticket office. She was returning two seats in the orchestra due to a conflict! The show was magnificent ... Chopinana, The Firebird, and Scheherazade.
We also visited the National Gallery of Art, the African Museum, the Sackler, and went to see the Star-Spangled Banner and First Ladies areas at the Smithsonian's American History Museum. I didn't take many photos on this quick weekend trip ... except for two details from the First Ladies fashions. Elegant!
Posted by Susan Lenz at 1:55 PM