Sunday, May 26, 2019


 (Above:  A Night on the Runway, Framed: 43" x 32". Altered, digital image from the Library of Congress of an early 20th century circus poster framed with recycled bottle caps.)

Generally, I don't get sucked into hours of browsing on social media or other on-line resources, but I can't seem to help myself when visiting the Library of Congress' website. It's fabulous!  It was the only place I went when needing a copyright free image for an upcoming opportunity with ecoFAB Trash Couture.  The opportunity calls for a "perfect trifecta" ... a garment made from recycled materials along with both a 2D and a 3D artwork. While at the Osage Arts Community in Missouri, I made the foundation of The Red Carpet Dress with a matching boa as well as a 3D biomorphic fiber abstraction called Red.   All I needed to complete my trifecta was a related 2D work.

 (Above:  A Night on the Runway hanging at Mouse House.)

My trifecta vision is to suggest a red carpet entryway to a high-class movie opening. The 2D artwork would have to set the stage.  After hours of looking, I settled on this circus poster. My PhotoShop skills are rudimentary at best but sufficient.  I had the resulting jpeg printed at FedEx Office and framed the faux movie poster with a collection of recycled beer caps.  To the best of my knowledge, there are no duplicate caps except for four New Castle Brown Ale (yellow with a center star) on the corners.  When one saves stuff ... one saves stuff!  My collection of bottle caps is deep!

(Above:  Waste Not Fresh Tears II. Framed: 25" x 21". Xylene photo transfer of a cemetery angel sculpture with oil pastels and hand stitched buttons.)

As deep as my bottle cap collection is, it can't hold a candle to my stash of buttons! I adore using old buttons and am happy to report that Waste Not Fresh Tears II is headed to a regional exhibition called FUSION at the Virginia Beach Art Center. It's a regional juried show featuring works of different media. 

(Above:  Always a Bridesmaid but Never a BrideThe Wall of Ancestors. Framed: 24" x 20". Collage of letters clipped from vintage and antique ephemera on hand-colored, anonymous photo.)

As deep as my button collection is, it can't hold a candle to my collection of letters clipped from vintage and antique ephemera.  This obsession is a constant.  Even though I have no future bookings for my Anonymous Ancestors installation, I can't help but to acquire more old, neglected photographs.  They seem to speak to me.  How could I resist this pretty girl?  Not put a narrative to her likeness?  Not rescue the image and give it a voice?

(Above:  All I Ever Wanted Was a Puppy but My Sister was Allergic The Wall of Ancestors. Framed: 16 1/2" x 14 1/2".)

Because I seriously don't need more of these pieces, I now try only to alter ones that suggest a story or evoke a past memory.  Such was this lovely, hand-colored picture of a little girl wearing a pale pink dress trimmed in tatting and holding a stuffed pet.

 (Above:  Hair Styles by Mom. The Wall of Ancestors. Framed: 12" x 14".)

Of course, I also can't resist pictures that make me laugh! In this picture, the kids' bangs remind me of my mother cutting my sister's hair and mine. Trying not to sneeze, we had to hold a dustpan under our chins to catch the falling bang ends. It is a wonder that they were ever so straight!
(Above:  Paper Leaves.  One of five pieces created to fill old, metal frames.)

While I was away for two-and-a-half months, my husband Steve decided to gut five metal frames we had in the garage.  Most people don't have framed artwork in their garages, but most people also don't own a frame shop and use their garage as a workshop.  (Our garage has never once had a car inside it!)  Steve spend a lot of time building frames in the garage and wants to surround himself with something new.  So, I decided to challenge myself:  Make artwork to fill the five frames ... but spend no more than an hour on each piece.  Well ... SUCCESS!  I forgot, however, to snap photos of the other four.  They are already hanging in the shop and there's too much reflection on the glass except for this one.  It was a fun challenge!

No comments: