Thursday, September 14, 2023

Mandala CLXXI

(Above:  Mandala CLXXI. Custom framed: 22 1/2" x 22 1/2". Found objects hand-stitched to a section of a vintage quilt. Objects include:  A biscuit cutter; a coffee K-pod; nine, faux-chocolate Easter bunnies; brass drawer knob plates; touchless door openers; four, toy loons; four, white plastic discs; 1970s UAW strike buttons; and assorted garment buttons. Click on any image to enlarge.)

Dozens of times I've been asked how I organize my stash of found objects.  In is a funny question because the truth of the matter is that there is no system.  I've collected potential items in one of my back work rooms. Chaos is not a strong enough word to describe it. Since 2020 when I started this series, that room has increasingly looked as if hit by a tornado (which might account for my recent idea to stitch a Found Object Tornado ... a plan that is now underway!)  Well, last week was my breaking point.  I started tackling the countless Ziploc bags, the small boxes, and the random piles. Some things were sorted.  Some things were rediscovered.  But for other things, I had to make the hard decision to let go.  These were tossed into the trash.  The nine, faux chocolate Easter bunnies were discarded ... for one night!

(Above:  Detail of Mandala CLXXI.)

The next morning I woke up to an NPR report about the current UAW's targeted strike deadline with General Motors, Ford and Stellantis (a company which builds Jeep, Ram, Dodge and Chrysler brands for North America.)  The deadline, which affects 145,000 auto workers, is TONIGHT.  For some reason, my waking dream associated the hard working Easter bunnies with the auto workers ... and I knew that I wanted to combine the bunnies with the collection of 1970s UAW strike buttons that I recently received as a donation to my stash from the talented Patty Kennedy-Zafred

(Above:  Detail of Mandala CLXXI.)

The Easter bunnies were retrieved from the trash.  Holes were drilled in them and in all the UAW buttons.  It didn't take long for this mandala to be stitched.  I'm really pleased how this piece turned out.  I hope that the auto workers and their companies are all happy tomorrow morning no matter what the outcome is.  By the way, over 400,000 workers struck General Motors in 1970.  The massive walkout lasted 67 days and affected 145 GM plants in the US and Canada. GM lost more than $1 billion in profits.

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