Friday, November 12, 2004

More Asanta Sana Africa

Grevy's Zebra Posted by Hello
These are the last three quilts from the exhibition. I thought I had another one, but cannot find it.
Grevy's Zebra was a stencil made from a photo that we took in Samburu- which is the only place where Grevy's Zebra occurs. Their stripes are much finer than other zebra's and this makes the animal seem much finer or petite, though they are the same size than other zebras. I hand painted the background and appliqued the trees and the stencilled zebra.

Deep in the Jungle... was a quilt about an experience that could only occur in Africa. We traveled through Africa with about 18 other people- of course half the crew did not like spicy food so our solution was to make spicy condiments like mango chutney. I had bought some chilies at a market a few days previously in Bujumburra, to make some chutney. As we traveled deep into the Zairean ( now Congo) jungle we encountered a Baptist choir on a ferry crossing on one of the anabranches of the Congo river. They sang for us as we crossed and I gave the choir master every single cassette tape I had. About ten miles further on we stopped in a village and were allowed to pitch our tents, and they had a fire place where I could make the chutney. As the evening progressed and I chopped chilies, choirs started turning up out of the jungle including the choir we had met- they were there for a choir competition! ( So this is what happens in the heart of Africa- forget Joseph Conrad or African Queen) At this point I realized how hot the chilies were and my hands started burning- I mean burning ( I had to keep them in wet cloths for the next 2 days) and the choirs sang all night- they sounded so beautiful- it was an amazing experience. Anyway the chutney was duly put into one of those very large plastic gherkin jars and within a week had eaten through the bottom of it!

Goma is a quilt inspired by the landscape around Goma, which is very volcanic with an eruption some time in the 1970's. Goma was also the place where thousands of refugees were massacred in the terrible war that occurred in this region in the early 1990's. The hills had very steep hillsides and every piece of land was utilized for crops of one kind or another. The villages were perched on top of the hills. Unfortunately you cannot see the heavy machine embroidery I did on the cultivated fields. The "eye" fabric I had purchased at a market in Bujumburra.

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