Friday, July 01, 2022

Mandala CXXIX

(Above:  Mandala CXXIX. Custom framed: 37 1/4" x 37 1/4". Found objects hand-stitched to a section of a vintage quilt. Found objects include:  A stainless steel trivet; a coffee pot strainer; a coffee K-pod; six gold flatware forks; six brass discs from old trophies with red, wooden checker pieces; six, round, orange Tinker Toy connectors; twelve dull red, wooden hoops from a Caron game; glass chandelier prisms; six pairs of scissors; four Maxwell House coffee lids; twenty-eight doll hands; beer caps; eight wooden blocks [cut in half]; twenty-eight touchless door openers; four brioche molds with red, wooden checker pieces; six, antique tin type photos; forty long needle-like parts of prostate radioactive seed implant devices; buttons and beads.  Click on any image to enlarge.)

After cutting up an old quilt into small sections for workshop participants, I still had one, big piece left.  I stapled it to a large stretcher bar.  The patches of fabric looked like a mess.  A piece of orange bridal tulle, however, seemed to bring balance to the surface colors.  I add tulle to every one of my Found Object Mandalas.  Besides providing a "wash" of color, it also protects the fragile fabric.  This particular quilt had plenty of weak seams and even some batting showing.  Next, I had to make a decision about the contrast between dark fabrics and light ones. 

(Above:  The old quilt before I cut it.)

I looked at my stash of objects and really wanted to use more of the carved wooden mules.  I bought them at an auction ... months ago.  I stitched them onto two earlier pieces.  Back then, I had plenty of darker mules, lighter mules, and even ones that seemed maple colored.  Now, the remaining ones all looked pretty much the same.


(Above: Stained half the wooden mules with dark walnut and the other half with red maple.)

It didn't take me long to figure out a solution!  I got some dark walnut and red maple stain. Half got one shade; half the other.  This seemed to solve the issue of contrast too.  I had just the right amount of contrast in the mules to balance out the contrast in the quilt fabrics!  Amazingly, I still have a few mules left.  I might drill holes in them and transform them into Christmas ornaments.

(Above:  Detail of Mandala CXXIX.)

It took a little while to find the correct size for the circle.  I wanted walnut, then maple, then walnut, etc.  If the circle were too large or too small, I'd end up with two of the same shades beside one another.  After I stitched the mules in place, I tackled the inside and outside.  For the inside, I had six pairs of identical scissors.  They were very sharp.  I went to Columbia Appliance Sales and Services.  It's a cool, independent shop that sells clippers, trimmers, and supplies for barbers and beauty shops.  The owner also sharpens scissors.  In the past, he has sharped our scissors.  This time, however, I had him remove the sharp edge.  Thank goodness he is also an artist and understood my odd request.

(Above:  Detail of Mandala CXXIX.)

I'm really pleased how this piece turned out.  Thanks to everyone who has contributed to my stash of objects.  Having so many diverse things really makes a huge difference when designing these pieces.

(Detail of Mandala CXXIX.)

1 comment:

Margaret said...

Remarkable -- yet again!