Saturday, July 22, 2017

Homestead National Monument, Day Five

 (Above:  The Visitor's Center and exhibition area at Homestead National Monument.  Click on any image to enlarge.)

Today was the fifth as an artist-in-residence at Homestead National Monument.  I've challenged myself to blog everyday, sharing first something about this unique place followed by what artwork I've done.  So ...  I know I included some images of the visitor's center in my initial blog post ... but I didn't mention the architecture.  It was designed to look like the blade of a plow facing due west.

The interior has two floors of exhibition space.  Homesteading is addressed from many viewpoints:  culturally, historically, economically, from the Native American viewpoint, and as it impacted the future.

The legislative section is very well done.  Today, I went to the visitor's center and from 1:30 - 5:00 stitched in public.

I shared some of the work I've finished ... including my wooden thread spool Christmas ornaments.

I also let several children make their first stitch ... right on the piece on which I'm currently working!

This is the public domain image of the Palmer-Epard log cabin that sits just outside the visitor's center.  I had Spoonflower print it on fabric.  The lower half was free-motion machine stitched two days ago.  Since then, I've been hand stitching texture into the sky.

  I had hoped to be finished by today ... but there's a bit more to go.  I am still considering whether to finish this with vintage textiles on the reverse or to frame it.  I'll decide tomorrow!

Perhaps one of the reasons I didn't get all the stitching done was that I worked on two other things.  I transformed these wrapped-and-stitched wooden thread spools into Christmas ornaments.  Each one has a shank button on the bottom and several holed buttons with a ribbon on the top.  I brought these spools "ready to go".  Now, however, I don't have any more "ready".

Not to worry!  I have this shopping bag filled with wooden thread spools.  They've all got yarn wrapped around them.  The edges all have blanket stitches.  I just have to add all the decorative stitches.  Then ... I'll make more Christmas ornaments!

The other thing I worked on was Waste Not Fresh Tears III.  I pretty much ran out of flesh and peach colored buttons when stitching the first two ....

... but I will definitely not run out of various tones of brown buttons!

(Above: Waste Not Fresh Tears III, 14" x 18".  Xylene photo transfer on printmaking paper fused to fabric.  Accented with water soluble crayons.  Buttons.  Hand stitched.)

I'm very pleased how this turned out.  I'll likely stitch another horizontal image tomorrow!  I could stitch all day ... and I did again!  Art residencies are truly "the gift of time".

(Above:  Waste Not Fresh Tears III, detail.)


Elizabeth said...

Amazing wonderful and inspiring. Teaching children to thread a needleand take a stitch on fabric, make theirmark and open up yheir life , perhaps is such an awesome thing. So many have mever had this experience- I am having this experience more and more!! Sad but winderful opportunities for us, those of us who believe in the power of art and teaching. You amaze me!! Would lovd to know how many buttons you stitch on in 5 minutes !! You must be amazingly fast! Hugs!!

Mary Ritter said...

Is these a link you could share where you find out about these opportunities?

Susan Lenz said...

Hi Mary,
I wade through the hundreds of opportunities listed on the Alliance of Artists Communities website.