Monday, April 16, 2012

Jam Packed Week of Art

(Above: Time Revolving, 23" x 26" x 10". 3D Found Art Object Assemblage. Click on image to enlarge. To read about this piece, scroll down!)

Springtime is always a wonderful season for art events ... but it is getting a bit ridiculous here in Columbia, South Carolina!

Today I mailed The Cemetery Flower Dress, The Leaf Dress, and my entire "I Do / I Don't" installation of wedding veils to Blue Door Gallery for the upcoming, national juried exhibition Art & the Human Form: Concept, Costume, and Beyond.

Tomorrow I'm speaking to the Sumter Art Guild.

On Wednesday I'm meeting with my studio assistant and getting my Gallery 80808 studio ready for Artista Vista (April 26th). My Bluegrass Roots I, II, and III are in the group show there. My studio assistant is keeping my studio open as I won't be here for the actual event.

On Thursday I'm giving a presentation to an elementary school art club, followed by a Runaway Runway rehearsal, followed by an Open Studio preview party where I'll pick up all the traffic and parking signs.

On Friday my sister and her friends arrive for the weekend and we "clean the house".

This coming Saturday our home/business will be open for:
701 CCA Open Studios ... my "home" studio and our business (Mouse House) will be open, 10 - 6!
The Historic Elmwood Park Tour of Homes ... the rest of the house will be open!
The Columbia Foundation Scavenger Hunt ... teams will be looking for a "bright pink arts publication, aka Jasper Magazine with my work on the cover!

...and that night is Runaway Runway, a fashion show of garments made from 100% recycled materials. I have a "killer" outfit headed for the catwalk.

Sunday is a continuation of Open Studios, noon - 6 PM.

On Monday Steve and I are flying to MUNICH! My sister Wanda (a very talented, traditional embroiderer) and her husband live there. My parents are flying in too ... and we'll all go to see Birmingham Royal Ballet's performances with the Bavarian Ballet Festival. Our elder son Mathias is first cast for Puck in The Dream! We can hardly wait!

This past week has been busy too!

(Above: Stephen Chesley and Ice.)

On Saturday night we went to a unique art reception. My mentor, oil painter Stephen Chesley, hosted it for his exhibition, Ice.

(Above: Some of Stephen's work at Tapps Center for the Arts.)

The paintings focused on the Titanic, images of icebergs, and portraits of crew members and passengers. The reception started at 11:20 PM, the exact time the Titanic hit the iceberg one hundred years earlier. It ended at 2:20 AM, the exact time when the ship totally went under the ocean's surface.

Steve and I decided to go "first class" ... complete with our life jackets!

(Above: Stephen Chesley, my husband Steve Dingman, me, and Patti, Stephen's girlfriend.)

Stephen found a recipe for the champagne punch served on the Titanic. He brought in a giant chunk of ice ... just to feel the cold water.

At one point, we took photos of people at this late night event ... though some had already turned in (or took the lifeboat home!)

(Above: Time Revolving.)

I, too, have been working on my art, finishing another 3D assemblage ... Time Revolving. Several months ago I stitched two pale blue vintage leather gloves on the scraps of a log cabin quilt (a gift from Connie Akers ... which I've now used every tiny piece!) The entire backgrounds are heavy with running stitch, kantha style embroidery. These were put into two wooden veneer frames and hinged to the old clock case, making a triptych.

(Above: Time Revolving, detail.)

The back of the clock casing is now a mosaic of broken mirror pieces. An antique toy globe from Bill Mishoe's auction was mounted on a piece of wood. It isn't any ordinary piece of wood but a part of an antique Victrola (also from Bill Mishoe's auction house). On the side are three wooden pegs salvaged from piano keys. The front spiral is from the original clock parts. I filled the wooden Victrola part with old, rusted nails wrapped in yarns and stitching.

(Above: Time Revolving, detail.)

The interior sides of the clock case is a collage of used postage stamps. These were collected from fiber postcard trades I made when conducting Cyber Fyber back in 2008 -09. I almost forgot I saved all these stamps!

(Above: Time Revolving, back side. Click on any image to enlarge.)

The back of the clock case and the two triptych side panels are backed with more vintage quilt scraps. These were made from old silk ties and a gift from my neighbor, Gita Larson. I stitched them onto pieces of recycled black acrylic felt.

(Above: Time Revolving, back, detail.)

The fabric for the side panels is nailed into the framing ... all vintage and used nails. The fabric for the center includes a row of buttons and was glued onto the back with gel medium. I'm very happy with this work.

(Above: Cabinet for The Book of Angels I - VI.)

So ... about that Victrola! I bought it at Bill Mishoe's auction several months ago. I knew exactly what it would become! It's finished now as a cabinet for my six Book of Angels antique photo albums. Of course, I plan to display The Book of Death on the top ... but it is currently on view at my solo show in Rocky Mount's (NC) Imperial Center. All the phonograph parts are being used in other 3D assemblages. The original top will become a "pedestal". Link

(Above: Cabinet, detail of top. Click on image to enlarge.)

The "new" top is actually a custom built frame with glass for a grave rubbing I made in Nottingham, England.

(Above: Interior of the cabinet with Victorian photo albums.)

Right now, one of the Book of Angels is sitting open in the large space where the Victrola parts used to be. This will actually be the place that The Book of Death can sit when the other albums are "out" and "sitting on the lectern" I made for it. I'll take another photo once I am able to put these books all together.

(Above: The Teachings, a collaborative art quilt and poem. 44" x 30". Click on any image to enlarge.)

I also finished The Teachings. Stephanie Levin, an award winning poet in North Carolina, is my partner for an upcoming exhibition called "Narrative Threads". (Click Stephanie's name above to read the poem and visit her blog. To view her awarding winning book Smoke of Her Body, winner of the Jacar Press Full Length Book Contest, Click HERE.) I wrote about making this quilt HERE. It is made from an antique quilt section mounted to a larger piece of the same quilt ... except that this larger part shows the "back" of the quilt. The poem is free motion stitched on slightly grey wedding tulle using a water soluble stabilizer. The entire quilt is stitched to black, acid-free foam centered board for support, especially for the "pillow". Vintage buttons and the blanket stitch edge the work. There's a stretcher bar stitched on the back ... straight through every layer. It is wired for hanging.

Narrative Threads will be exhibited at Page-Walker Arts and History Center in Cary, NC from June 25th through August 27th with a reception on June 29th!


Roberta Warshaw said...

I have no words, other than "glorious"!

Have a wonderful and exciting week and trip!

Love the ice!

Anne Larsen said...

Since first being introduced to your art work via your residency in Key West, I have been repeatedly overwhelmed to see and read about your prolific creative output! Am eagerly following your blog to view more and more!

Lynn Cohen said...

I can not figure out how or when you come up for air, Woman? Your schedule is beyond human capacity. You amaze and inspire me.

This new work is amazing. I like the back, those stitches around the strips of fabric on the middle back really got my attention!

Have a wonderful trip to see your son dance!

I could go on and on (as you did with so much to tell) but I do not have your whatever it is you have that allows you to do SO MUCH at once! And people say I am prolific.
They should KNOW YOU!!!!

lynda Howells said...

wow..words fail me..gorgeousxxxx glad you asre seeing your son dance again. he is doing wellxxx

Els said...

Wow ! Busy as a bee ....!
You're doing very well at the moment !
Have fun, Susan !

Gabriela said...

Susan! There's no stopping you! Lovely lovely work!

Wanda said...

Can't wait to see you! I'm picking you up at the airport. Yes, I know where it is!! AND I know how to get back. You two look FABULOUS...even with the life vests!!

Connie Akers said...

Amazing as always. I love "Time Revolving". Somewhere in the packed away bits of my life there is a small bit of that log cabin that will some day come your way. Our house finally sold & we will move by end of May into the rv while we build. Look forward to your next update.

Anonymous said...

Time Revolving is such a fascinating piece. So much to look at and as I've said before, so many stories to imagine and the Victrola cabinet is a genius idea for the Angel books!
I just need to know how you manage to get all those extra hours in a day!!