(Above: Anonymous Ancestors Sculptural Garment III hanging at Mouse House. Click on any image in this blog post to enlarge.)
For my upcoming September solo show, Anonymous Ancestors, at the University of South Carolina-Beaufort's Sea Island Gallery, I've envisioned three sculptural garments. The three sculptural garments are supposed to give the illusion of "people" in the installation environment ... like ghostly reminders of all the anonymous people in the hundreds of vintage photographs. This week I finished the final piece. I'm really pleased with it.
The sheer black garment inspired the piece along with the fact that I already owned a custom coat hanger. The coat hanger was made a couple years ago by John Sharpe at his business, Sharpe Creations. I needed only one coat hanger for a special Grave Rubbing Art Quilt called At Rest ... but John is an over-achiever and eager to provide "more than enough". He delivered two. The second one came in handy!
I used only anonymous color photos for the first sculptural garment and only black-and-white for the second piece. For this third work, I combined the images. Despite using hundreds and hundreds of anonymous vintage photos during my month-long art residency in Fergus Falls, MN and hundreds more making these three sculptural garments, I still have a box of images left. It is sort of sad.
This piece is very, very long. Yet, I don't see it suspended quite as high as its own length. I like the idea of allowing the bottom to drag onto the floor ... as if it could continue for many more feet (or yards or miles) ... mimicking the endless supply of anonymous vintage snapshots in the world.
The photos were all fused to fabric before being stitched together on a substrata of Pellon's 806 Stitch-and-Tear. After stitching the giant grid, all the Stitch-and-Tear must be torn from the reverse. It is a rather tedious task.
Every little section between the "bridges" of thread must be removed. It took over three afternoons to complete the job.
I had a wonderful "studio assistant" doing it! Who? Well ... my husband Steve. We had an agreement. If he wanted to sit in front of the television and watch the British Open Golf Championship, he had to tear away the Stitch-and-Tear paper. The match was exciting enough that Steve was able to finish the project before the back nine holes! LOL!
This is Steve ... the master champion of Stitch-and-Tear removal. This photo is also the first one taken on my brand new camera. My camera usually resides in my purse. After a year, the fine focus is shot. This new camera, however, is going to stay on my tripod and be used ONLY for shooting artwork. Hopefully, it will last longer than a year. At least ... that's the plan.
I am linking this blog post to Nina-Marie's "Off the Wall Fridays", a site for sharing fiber arts.