(Above: Anonymous, Grave Rubbing Art Quilt Series. Best Use of Recycled Material's Bonus Award Winner at the La Conner Quilt and Textile Museum's 2012 Quilt Festival. 49" x 47". Crayon grave rubbing on 1930s child's slip collaged with scraps of vintage household linens on old drawn-work tablecloth. Hand and free-motion machine embroidery. Click on image to enlarge. To read more about this piece and see other detail images, click here.)
Last night ... on the other coast of North America ... at the La Conner Quilt and Textile Museum's Quilt Festival ... Anonymous was selected for the "Bonus Award" for "Best Use of Recycled Materials. The full list of award winners is HERE.
(Above: The Leaf Dress, artificial cemetery greenery and flowers on water soluble stabilizer. Click on image to enlarge. To read more about this garment and other cemetery floral dresses, including construction methods and in-progress images, click here.)
That's not all! The Leaf Dress won first place in the Master's Division for Wearables! I'm really honored to have two award winners in this show!
(Above: Seven different artist photo albums, in progress. Click on image to enlarge.)
The only way to win awards, of course, is to continually be making new work! So ... what have I been up to? Making new work! This Sunday is Unearth: A Celebration of Natural Inspired Art at Saluda Shoals Park. I'm one of thirty-five juried artists who will be in the park demonstrating ways that nature influences my creative process. In past years I've made acrylic felt leaves, used natural materials as resists for heat-activated paints, and stitched using acorn caps. This year I'll showing Japanese stab bindings while finishing up seven artist photo albums. The pictures are from various outdoor trips, including my art residency with The Studios of Key West, a trip through Butchard Garden outside Victoria, British Columbia, and an afternoon admiring the Angel Oak on John's Island near Charleston, South Carolina.
(Above: Health Care in America, a work in progress. Click on image to enlarge.)
I'm also in the midst of making a unique found object assemblage called Health Care in America. The hundred or so used, orange plastic prescription bottles came from Kirkland Smith, one of the other artists with studio space at Gallery 80808/Vista Studios. Kirkland creates amazing portraits from recycled materials. She can't use all the plastics donated to her ... and she was going to get rid of all these bottles. I knew exactly what I wanted them for ... and this is it. In the coming week, I'll be shredding pages of Obamacare, the republican party alternative, various company's paperwork, and a copy of my own health insurance plan (which, like most artists and others who can't afford more ... has a $10,000 deductible and is really only "catastrophic" insurance to hopefully save our house in the event of a medical emergency).
Figuring out how to "build" a vessel from assorted prescription bottle has been a new experience. There are several layers of bottles below what is visible in this photo. I "built" up from the table top using large circles cut from foam-centered board stacked with picture frames. The "rims" are also circles cut with my oval/circle mat cutter and painted orange. This piece has a way to go, but it has been fun!
(Above: Parade for "First Thursday" on Main Street. This is the Jasper Magazine group. Click on image to enlarge.)
I'm especially lucky to have a great deal of support for my artwork here in Columbia ... including the expert advise for Health Care in America from Dr. Bob Jolley ... an emergency room doctor who happens to be one of the city's greatest art supporters. He and his wife Cindi publish Jasper Magazine. Last night I joined them on Main Street for a celebration parade honoring our local, independent cinema's move to a refurbished theater at 1607 Main Street. (Nickelodeon Theatre is a non-profit showing great films since 1979 ... and the "move" to Main Street required the acquisition of an old theatre, a capital campaign, thousands of volunteer hours, and the support of the entire arts community ... lots to celebrate and a parade was definitely in order!)
By the way, it is NOT too late to vote for me for the Jasper 2012 Visual Artist of the Year award. Link for VOTING! One vote per Internet server ... so ... THANK YOU to all those who have already voted. Walking with Jasper and distributing the latest issue was the least I could do for all the support I've received. Steve walked and passed out magazines with me. We had a blast!
I'm also linking this post to Nina-Marie's "Off the Walls Friday" blog post for "works in progress"!