Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Wintry Dandenongs Blast

It's been quite quite cold this last week and so I am grateful to be staying somewhere with a wood heater and power. I do have a woodheater in my shed but no power at present which makes it difficult to sew on my sewing machine, and I need to get half a dozen art quilt projects done for  Magic Patch so they can publish them over the next year.It is great to get things published but it also means getting the work done , and unfortunately I cannot share it with you, until they are published.

This Saturday ( 30 July) I will begin a three session Travellers Blanket class at Open Drawer in Camberwell. This is the only class I have booked in Australia at the moment ( and yes I am available for teaching after the beginning of November). This is always such a fun class- because the stories really add zest and life to the stitching, and because it is hand stitched it takes time and thought- a kind of mindfulness that we don't always allow ourselves time for. Just follow the link if you are interested in joining us. We will be dying Fabric this Saturday and making a start to our stitching and story telling. I have had people do wonderful things in the past- some have used woollen  blankets, others khadi cloth or muslin, fabric scraps from  the sewing baskets of mothers, pieces of shirts for a memory cloth, bits and pieces found in a father's junkyard, flotsam and jetsam from beach combing, travel tales- there are so many ways of telling a story in stitch!

I have finally finished stitching my big tree linocut- it's all hand stitched and turned into a bit of a marathon, because well, I wanted it to look a certain way. I have also photographed the back to show you- simply because I am not so concerned about how the back looks ( but as I have been doing other magazine projects- I have tidied up the backs a bit more than I normally do) But I do like the way the back of this looks.

I have the printed tree panel available if you are interested- have quite a good range of colours at the moment or I can custom dye.The panels are hand printed. Panels are $25 AUS plus postage. Email me if you are interested in purchasing a panel.

The studio where I am staying at the moment- has many wonderful trees and plants surrounding it, including many natives and of course tree ferns. The  new fronds are just beginning to unfurl- they are such marvellous looking things! I think I can feel a linocut coming on for my Aussie Bush project!

I have also been trying to sell some older work at bargain basement prices- after all artist' must eat and live and buy materials to create further work. One of my older Hellfire pieces was bought by the friends who is allowing me to use their studio for the time being ( it will get listed on AirBNB after I move out in two weeks or so).It is so lovely to see this piece in their entrance hallway- you don't always get to see how work is hung or how it looks. The fabric has been hand dyed- and then burnt to create the reverse applique and then heavily stitched by machine and by hand.

I think the Aussie bush  project will be my next project in the style of the Medieval Project and the Sentinelles. The Medieval Project will finish later this year, but there has been a lot of interest in the works and response has been very enthusiastic, with people amazed at the variety and imagination used. I have been working on a linocut- which I finished today ( and then chopped a line through- argghh so now I have to glue a small piece of lino in place) and I am waiting on printing ink which I have ordered- so next week I hope to unfurl one maybe two new linocuts for this project.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Medieval Project- and Something New

I had intended to go back down to Gellibrand but as I have six quilts to make and six articles to write I have taken up the kind offer of some friends to use their bungalow until the Medieval Project starts touring again in mid-August. I will travel with the medieval project as follows:

Canberra- August 11-14
Newcastle August 18-21
Hamilton New Zealand September 1-4
Wellington New Zealand September 8-10
( if anyone knows of cheap/budget accommodation in Canberra or Newcastle your  advice would be much appreciated!)

I have had the thinking cap on for a new project, as people keep asking what I will do next, so I will start creating new linocuts inspired by the Australian Bush- and the new project will be called the Bush Project- so watch this space!I will be making linocuts, printing them on fabric with the idea of creating a panorama of the bush, which will be for sale-and hopefully embroidered and embellished by many hands as the sentinelles were and the Medieval project were.I hope that The Bush Project will again fire the imagination .

Meanwhile some of my sentinelles are for sale- these are the small hand stitched panels that measure approximately 8 inches x 18 inches. They are $125 each- these are the last of the small sentinelles. The photo below is a collage of the three different ones I still have left. Email me if you are interested

I have finally come up for some plans for the use of my block of land, that make me feel better about it and which will hopefully rejuvenate some of my lost dreams, but first I have to get these articles out of the way and sew up a storm!

Monday, July 04, 2016

From Mid Summer to Mid Winter

I am  writing this wrapped in a duvet to keep warm- i think I am reacting to the cold after coming from  gorgeous mid summer weather only last Thursday. I don't do cold weather well and  I am feeling a bit sluggish. I left France on the 30th and arrived back in Australia on the 2nd of July- somewhere over the Indian Ocean I lost a day. But I have to get supermotivated and get a load of work done .

There is also some exciting news for the Medieval Project. It has been touring with Expertise Events most of this year and will continue to do so. In August it will go to Canberra and Newcastle and in September it will go to New Zealand, Hamilton and Wellington- I will be going along with the exhibition as well . After the Wellington exhibition I will be returning to Europe in order to demonstrate for Bernina at Carrefour Europeen du Patchwork and teaching in Italy

My last weeks in Italy and France were busy and involved lots of sitting on  buses yet again as buses seem to be the cheapest form of transport, especially when booking at the last minute. I passed through Genoa on the way back to Montpellier-  and spent the night there as my connecting bus did not leave until the next morning. Genoa seems different to other Italian cities- very mixed- I guess a result of its seafaring past- it also seemed poor and the very narrow streets and laneways in the old part of the city were kind of eerie, with very little sunshine filtering down to the street level. The architecture of the older churches were banded black and white stonework, giving it a very middle eastern feel, yet the internal decorations - which were renovated in the baroque period- seemed at odds with the  architecture; all florid and wafting.

Then it was back to Le Triadou and  working on my quilt for Vendee Globe and then to Festival Forca Fil in Alpes de Haute Provence to install my work at the Eglise in Mane. Unfortunately the quilts I had sent for exhibition at the Musee Salagon did not arrive in  time to be installed for the exhibition- so that was a waste of postage money- thank goodness they did actually eventually arrive and I was able to hang them in the Eglise where they looked at home!The festival was disappointing as the visitor numbers were significantly reduced compared to the previous festival so with 85 artists and commercial stall holders all sharing  a smaller visitor base, sales were few and far between. I think everyone would have been disappointed.But it was lovely to catch up with a number of people!

There wasn't enough space in the  Eglise to hang my new Tifaifai quilts and so I draped them over the pews- I quite liked the look of half the design hanging as a triangle.

I managed to get quite a lot of hand stitching done on one of my linocut printed tree pieces as visitors did not disrupt my sewing too much.

The print is available for sale for $25 plus postage. The print measures 50 cm x40 cm and has been handprinted on hand dyed fabric. Email me if you are interested in buying a print( I have quite a few different colours available)

After the Festival I returned to Le Triadou to finish my Vendee Globe quilt, have my last two walks with Nesta the dog  in the shadow of Pic St Loup ( how I will miss my walks!) and to pack for my return to Australia and the long flight  home.

I still have books Musing in Textile:France available for sale- we (my daughter Celeste Galtry and I) wrote an article about our journey with the fund raising and the actual  design and publishing process for Downunder Textiles - our copy arrived the other day . And of course some of my new work is for sale on this page