Monday, April 22, 2024

Unpacked, new lights, and Artista Vista

(Above:  Mandala CLXXIX.  Custom framed: 25" x 25".  Found objects hand-stitched to a section of a vintage quilt. Objects include:  The front of an egg timer; clock dial; white plastic rings; blue landline telephone connectors; antique eyeglasses; blue plastic dairy lids; prisms; vintage brass belt buckles; bread closure tabs; insulin lancets; gold, plastic lids; casino chips; beer bottle lids; sewing needle cases; vintage milk and yogurt cardboard lids; brass hinges; Shiner pins; beads and assorted buttons.  Click on any image to enlarge.)

Here's a promise!  From here on out, I WILL BLOG MORE REGULARLY.  I can say this with a high level of assurance because I have finally unpacked the very last box and finished the first Found Object Mandala ... and that's "finished stitching, mounting, framing, photographing, and entering it into my inventory book.  I am so happy!  The life I envisioned over the last ten months is finally my reality!

(Above:  Detail of Mandala CLXXIX.)

This Found Object Mandala was an important part of the incentive to set up my studio in the sanctuary.  Why?  Well ... it's a commission!  The beautiful blue-and-white quilt was sent to me by a friend who splits her time between Minneapolis and Phoenix.  It was the quilt under which she slept in her childhood.  Its condition made it obvious that it was well loved ... as in very threadbare, extremely fragile, and no longer a functional blanket ... but something that she just couldn't part with.  It made every move in her adulthood, looking for its "second life".  I am so pleased to be providing it!  Along with the quilt, my friend sent the antique eyeglasses, several of the silver and brass buttons, and Shriner's pins.  These things came from her recently deceased mother-in-law.  

The stitching was done more than a week ago ... but then came several "firsts"!  The stretcher bar and frame were the first things cut and built in the framing section of the sanctuary.  The first acid-free foam-centered boards were cut.  This was the first piece mounted and first piece photographed here in Cateechee.  Obviously, this is the first piece blogged from here too. Soon, it will be the first thing packaged and shipped! 

(Above:  Ernie the Cat sitting on the choir loft's railing, overlooking the sanctuary on the day the light fixtures were rewired!)

While this piece was marking many "firsts", lots of other things have been happening.  We had the electrician rewire the sanctuary lights!  Until this time, we were using a flashlight in this area after dark!

(Above:  The church after dark ... with the newly wired sanctuary lights ON !!!)

Now ... the church looks magnificent at night!  Yet, it will soon be different.  Why?  Well, Steve and I "bit the bullet" and are having the eight, tall sanctuary windows replaced (four on each side of the building).  I know that in photographs, these windows look as if they have stained glass.  They don't.  It's multi-colored spray painted Plexiglas held in place by wood in various stages of deterioration. (The circular windows are also painted Plexiglass but the wood is in good condition.  We are not planning on changing them.)  This rather expensive job will be the last major task in our renovation of this church.  I am really looking into lots more natural light flooding my studio!  Obviously, these windows are being custom built.  We don't have a firm installation date but I will blog the transformation!

(Above:  The last box being unpacked.)

Last week, the very last box was unpacked.  Steve and I celebrated this milestone ... which happened on the same day as the continuation of my Cascade/Lace Forest Installation!  Yes!  I'm working in my studio.  I've returned to the installation started last October during a two-week art residency at Bethany Arts Community.  I promise to blog this next!  It is coming along wonderfully!

(Above:  Doing the prep work for another Community Crazy Quilt public art project.)

Last week was also the time when I put together another Community Crazy Quilt public art project.  This one was for Artista Vista 2024 back in Columbia.  Steve and I seriously didn't think we would be returning to Columbia after only seven weeks away, but why not! 

(Above:  The Community Crazy Quilt Project during Artista Vista 2024.)

Scraps of vintage quilts, a piece of Battenburg lace, several fabric yoyos and crocheted circles, and buttons were shared with the public from 2 - 6 last Saturday.  It was hot but the turn out was still good.  Plenty of people stitched and I was even interviewed on film.  I will, of course, finish this piece.  It will become another unit in my Patchwork Installation.  I promise to blog that too!

(Above: Selfie at Hidden Falls.)

Steve and I haven't spent every day unpacking and trying to get our new life in working order.  There's been several days when we've hiked to one of the many South Carolina Upstate waterfalls.  Recently, we went to Oconee State Park and visited Hidden and Disappearing Waterfalls.  The smell of late spring filled our lung.  It was glorious!

1 comment:

Catherine - Mixed Media Artist said...

awesome post with your journey unfolding