Saturday, March 21, 2015

Medieval Project is Starting to Take Shape

I have arrived in France ( brrr it's too cold!) to find some of the  gorgeous pieces that have been made for the Medieval Project which will be shown at  Pour l'Amour du Fil in the end of April, where I shall also be teaching. I can't tell you how exciting it is to open each package and find what new heights of inventiveness the makers have climbed to ( I feel almost ashamed of my ordinary paltry efforts) . I just love how stitch and colour transforms these pieces and that somehow they become the makers own  with a distinct expressiveness that seems to radiate from each piece.

 This queen has been embroidered and embellished by Libby Williams- and she may indeed have been these colours at Chartres Cathedral because it is now known that the gothic statues that adorn the Royal Portal were once coloured from traces of colour that have been found.I just love the sparkle and richness created in the dress.

The medieval rabbit has been stitched and reverse appliqued and some humour added by Emanda Fretwell- the detail in this is gorgeous and it so has that feel of the medieval!

And finally a king joins the ladies made by Denise Fordyce- the embroidery on this is subtle but rich with a bit of sparkle, just the right sort of feel for a medieval king!

I hope I shall see more  queens and kings and bunnies and dragons arrive- for what will hopefully be like a rich medieval tapestry.I hope they will glow and warm and inspire! The ones I already have here certainly exude that kind of feeling. They will tour in Australia after Nantes and premiere at the Berry Patchwork Shop Retreat at the end of August 2015.

And on Tuesday, 24 March 2015 I will be teaching lino-cutting and printing at Au Fil d'Emma in Orleans. there are still some places available. I will teach you the techniques I use to create my  own linocuts and how I print with them, and after the  wonderful encounter with Indian woodblocks, I think I may have a few new ideas!

Monday, March 16, 2015

Indian Fun

First of all- update  on Pozible pledges being delivered in France, Europe and the USA: I bulk airshipped books to France for posting to various places from France- I shipped before I left only to be told by the shipper that the books are stuck in customs in Marseilles- this is not unusual but simply means more delay. I am really sorry about this, but they have to pass through customs, so it is an unavoidable necessity and one which is causing more delay. We hope to have them in France this week so we can start posting finally.

The last two weeks in India have simply flown by. So many impressions and lovely experiences, and some creativity thrown into boot at  Creative Arts Safaris creative Camp- which I will share at the end of this post. We saw lots of things , and though I wished I could bring a suitcase of treasure the reality is that my suitcase already was pretty full with books, teaching materials and exhibition pieces, so I have had to be restrained! I did buy some hand made paper from Kadamb hand made papers in Jaipur. The papers are made from cotton t-shirts/jersey knit which has been shredded. This makes lovely paper which  takes stitching as well as water colour and writing- heaven!

So some impressions; people and modes of transport:

The ubiquitous motor-bike, noisy, and apparently you can ride them any where a person can walk- oh a turban helps as do super cool sun glasses!

Elegance in a little back alley in Ajmer!

More elegance whilst churning butter in Fiona's backyard!

And then there is door is a favourite colour, and despite rubbish, electricity lines and grotty looking alleys doorways are objects of fascination.

Little shrines in every shop and on every corner- with the smell of incense wafting on the air

And bling- so much bling, that i was overwhelmed and forgot to photograph though I did buy some- peacocks. But the reds are just wonderful and this bling belonged to wedding saris.....Beaded embroidered, silk just over the top bling!

And last but not least. Whilst at the Creative camp I played around with the hand made paper and made a book of sorts. It still needs a cover, but Fiona had given us off cuts from The Stitching Project and the printed fabrics they make in the workshop. We also played around with some of the wood block stamps they have designed at the workshop.  I have both water coloured and stitched the paper and used some of the stitched  off cuts and  used woodblocks to print the paper.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Glimpses of India

Just a quick blog post- so much to see , so much to  absorb, just such a wonderful world of colour and textile!

We have just come back from Jaipur with Creative Arts Camp organised by Creative Arts Safaris, where I could have spent another week or more- we went to some towns nearby to do some  indigo dyeing and print with  mud blocks. The results you can see on Fiona Wright's washing line.

 Some wandering around the village of Amber, in the shadow of the Amber Fort on the way to visit the Anokhi Museum  where the Gujarat block printing is beautifully displayed and demonstrated. The photos are of various things we saw in Amber village.

 It was also Holi- a festival devoted to the overcoming of good over evil and the height of the  propentious period for weddings- so lots of coloured powder  ( which I avoided) lots of noise and lots of music and dance.
  The different modes of transport- elephant car and bike, missing is the camel, motor bile and tuktuk!

  A wedding horse around the corner from Fiona and Praveen's workshop ( the Stitching Project)- the saddle blanket is entirely beaded in sequins and beads.

And musicians playing music and one perhaps not listening so well, by the looks of his hands over his ears.