Sunday, April 25, 2010

And Two Became One

No, not a wedding announcement--although maybe it could be thought of that way.  I'm really meaning that the two separate woven cloths from the "Local Industry" part of Anne Wilson's exhibit, Wind/Rewind/Weave were successfully joined together today.  Just a few more details for the ends to be done tomorrow morning and then the cloth, as one whole piece, can be rolled and stored until its public unveiling sometime in the future.

Here's what we did today:

Ray clipped out header on one side while Pat looked on.

Pat picked out header threads from one side, while I did from the other side.  Ray also took part in this step.

We then began to draw the two sides together by pulling the warp ends on one side, then the other side.  You can see the gray meeting the thin black line quite well at the top of the photo.  There's a gap near the bottom that wasn't yet pulled together when I took the photo.  Ray was holding the opposing warps on the underside of the cloth.

Here I'm pulling ends back in the opposite direction, about every 3rd warp.  This will secure the join so that it won't come apart at the junction.

And here's a view of the cloth pulled together without our hands included.  Still more of the warps to be needled in the opposite direction in the morning, ends all snipped... then the two cloths will truly be one!

Since I probably won't be back to Knoxville for awhile I decided to take a few photos around the area of downtown where I've been staying.  First, of course, have to show one of the (now) iconic photos of Knoxville, the Sunsphere, built during the 1982 World's Fair held here...

Then, one of the thirty sculptures on display in town for the next few months in the Art in Public Places exhibit... this one is, as you can see, near the Knoxville Convention Center.  It's called "Sailors Warning" and is of painted steel, 13' high x 5' wide x 5' deep, by Duke Oursler.

And, last but not least... some amazing art in public places in the form of graffiti near Market Square:


Wind/Rewind/Weave winds down today

More about the Anne Wilson exhibit that's ending today at the Knoxville Museum of Art, but first I want to make a link to Bhakti Ziek's blog:
Bhakti supports the idea of the open source jacquard loom that Marguerita Benitez is proposing.  Here's a quote from Bhakti's blog about it:
I know Margarita Benitez from a workshop I taught a number of years ago, and have been in contact ever since. She is a bright, energetic artist, a giving teacher, and an innovator. In her Kickstarter project, she is asking for $10,000 to create a computerized jacquard loom, which will be open-source--meaning anyone else can use her data to create their own loom.
Although my own work is tapestry and done with the simplest of looms, I continue to be intrigued with the designing potential of jacquard.  The technology is more affordable and more accessible that ever before, and the idea that it could become even more so in the future is very exciting.   Take a look at Bhakti's blog and find the links to Benitez's  information, if you're curious.

Now... a few photos from the past two days at the museum with the ending of the cloth.  First, it was cut off on Friday morning with a group of students on a tour standing around to see it:

Chris discussed the exhibit and Anne Wilson's concept for the cloth that had been woven before we began to cut it off.

Hailey snips a few threads; several of us who were there and who'd taken part in the weaving shared the cutting off experience.

The cloth was laid out on the prepared tables.  It's so long that it has to be folded in places.  Here Geri, Jo-Marie, and Pat inspect and discuss the next steps to be taken.

Ray worked on an area that had been very loosely woven and was able, with careful manipulation, to pull the wefts nicely together.

I began a half-Damascas end finish; Nick looks on.  After I compled the half-Damascus across, Geri took over to work the warp tails into the weaving, then Nick and Dana clipped them off.

Ray tackles one end while Nick and Dana complete the other end.

I'm working on joining the two lengths together. 

 The fabric built up too thickly on the cloth beam to be continued so the first length had to be cut off several weeks ago.  Many additional yards were woven in the second section... the second part is what's spreading to my left and snaking around on the table that's closest.  Ray is in the distance working on the end of the first cloth.

Here's the way Ray's meticulous end finishing looks... just amazing, I think!

The museum doesn't open until 1 p.m. today (Sunday).  When I get there I'll continue with the joining process.  I hope it will be complete by 5 today!  

The whole cloth will be on display at some time in the future at the museum.  Check the KMA website for information about that.  Anne Wilson's work will next be seen in Houston at the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston in Hand+Made: The Performative Impulse in Art and Craft, May 15-July 25, 2010.  Here's information from the website:
Hand+Made: The Performative Impulse in Art and Craft features twenty artists who innovatively expand the traditions of art and craft through the incorporation of performance. The exhibition features a series of on- and offsite performance events, including crochet nights at the Museum in which visitors are invited to crochet works from an installation created by Sheila Pepe, a performance of Anne Wilson’s Wind-Up: Walking the Warp, and a series of public events around the city in which Gabriel Craig creates small articles of jewelry for those he encounters. A complete schedule of dates and locations will be available on the Museum’s website.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Wind/Rewind/Weave -- Knoxville Museum exhibit once more

This weekend is the last for Anne Wilson's exhibit titled "Wind/Rewind/Weave"at the Knoxville Museum of Art.  The weekend is also one of concerts and festivals in Knoxville--that's the reason for the tents and the "BIG TASTE..." truck in the photo in the green below the museum.  In fact, as I'm writing this I hear pretty loud rock music from Market Square, right next to the hotel where I'm staying.  I forgot to bring ear plugs so if it goes on beyond midnight, I'm in trouble!

Back to the reason I'm here in Knoxville.  I've participated in a part of Wilson's exhibit at KMA before, the portion called "Local Industry"--as have many other weavers.  That part of the exhibit has a loom set up in one of the galleries at which weavers have been creating a weft-faced fabric in bands of colors.  Each weaver responds to the previous weaver's color choices to move ahead into her/his own sequence of colors.  It's creating an amazing cloth and the full result will be seen tomorrow when the second part of the cloth is cut off the loom (a portion had to be removed from the cloth beam several weeks ago because it was building up so much as to interfere with the operation of the shafts).

I wondered if I'd be as taken with the exhibit concept and the visual impact within the gallery space upon my return as during my first days of weaving earlier in the year--and when I walked into the gallery I still found it all to be breathtaking.  Anne Wilson's work is amazing and I'm happy to have learned more about it by being part of this exhibit and also by having access, in the reading room adjacent to the gallery, to earlier catalogs of her exhibits.

The few photos below were taken quickly late this afternoon when I got to the Museum.  Tomorrow is cutting off day for the second part of the cloth and the finishing will begin.  I'll show stages of that process tomorrow night.

A last bobbin winder fills a bobbin; it won't join the hundreds in the yarn wall but she had the experience and she was quite excited about the process.

A couple of more last viewers of the weaving as it was in process.  The young girl also wound a bobbin the the winding stations.  

Chris Molinski, curator, phtographs Pat Bing in her last few picks of weft on the cloth.

A few of the other of the Knoxville contingent of weavers who've worked hard on this exhibition for the past several months...

and the end of the weaving (gray)... with thick yarn to hold it all in place until we can tackle the end finishing tomorrow!

Shared Visions: Nature in Textiles

Earlier this week I dropped off several tapestries in Asheville at the Southern Highland Craft Guild for the exhibit at the Focus Gallery.  This gallery is the smaller one at the Folk Art Center that features one or two Guild members for about a month each throughout the year.  I'm sharing the space with my friend, Diane Getty, and we've called our show "Shared Visions: Nature in Textiles" since the themes we both work with is often inspired by natural forms.

The exhibit will be up from April 24 through June 15 at the Folk Art Center, Milepost 382, Blue Ridge Parkway, Asheville, North Carolina.  The phone number is 828-298-7918 and the hours are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily.  I'll be there May 6 through May 9 to demonstrate tapestry weaving (10 a.m. to 5 p.m.) ... come on by to say hello, if you can--and happy Earth Day!

Thursday, April 15, 2010 here I am, hard at work today on the kudzu...

Oh!  Maybe that's not me after all!  Or maybe I'm channeling a weaver from the 1920s.  Maybe she'll come in at night when I'm gone and finish this tapestry for me!

So here's the 2010 version of the weaver, hard at work on this dang tapestry that seems to grow longer every day.  Oh, yeah... I AM weaving kudzu! 

Here's the tapestry at the end of this day.  Still several inches from the top and I've resigned myself to not having it off the loom to take to the Focus Gallery exhibit that will be in Asheville from April 24-June 15.  I'll be exhibiting along with Diane Getty, like I mentioned in an earlier post.  But that's OK since I'll be back in Asheville for the Guild's Fiber Days during the first weekend in May.  I'll take it with me for my display during my demonstration then.  And, who knows?  It might even grow a few inches longer by then!

P.S.  The b/w photo of the weaver is from The Weaver's Craft by Simpson & Weir, published by Dryad Press.  I found it in the 4th edition of the book, dating 1944.  That's a few years before I was born so maybe I'm really a reincarnation of the weaver--only the shoes didn't make it through.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

and kudzu still grows...

Here's the progress at the end of today.  I'm showing more in this photo since the top of the cartoon that's seen is the top edge of the tapestry.  At the highest point on the left I'm 8" away; from the lowest point with the dip on the right there remains 12" to weave.  Striking distance this week, I think!

Here it is turned as it will be seen when it's hanging.  I'm really looking forward to finding out what's happened over these 60" when it's off the loom. So many color decisions have been made along the way that I can't see now--not so much in the value of the grays of the vine but in the leaves, suggestions of leaves and the background area.  I know I have some very light and bright leaf shapes at the beginning (which will be the left side of the tapestry) but don't know how successfully these will work out with the whole.  This is one of the challenges of working as I do, making color decisions along the way.  It would be easier to judge what's going on if I were working on a loom with the warp stretched entirely before me.  As it winds up onto the cloth beam I lose track of what went before.  That's one of the reasons I take so many photos of pieces in process.  At least those give me some reference and guidance.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Friday, April 9, 2010

kudzu grows again in the studio...

After many days away from the kudzu tapestry I've been able to weave quite a bit this week.  I've moved through the transition point where I cut off the cartoon to do some modifications to the design and am glad about that.  I've still got to watch the vines carefully to make sure they will seem to be where they ought to be after wiggling and weaving over each other.  But now that I'm back at the loom consistently for several hours a day that should work out OK.  My plan is to weave as much as I can this weekend and the first of next week.  After that I'll have some other tasks to work on and then will again be out of town for a long weekend to attend the annual meeting of Southern Highland Craft Guild.

I'll also be delivering works for a joint show my friend and fellow Guild member, Diane Getty, and I are having in the Focus Gallery at the Folk Art Center in Asheville.   That's to be up from April 24 through June 15.  The title we've given the show is "Shared Vision: Nature in Textiles" and it will feature work both in fabric collage (Diane's pieces) and tapestry (mine).  We've both used nature themes for many years and I think it will be interesting to see the pieces hanging together.   I'll also be at the Folk Art Center to demonstrate tapestry during the May Fiber Days weekend... more about that later.

So... here's the kudzu tapestry at the end of the day:

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Folk School blog post

More from the Folk School... our tapestry class was noted in today's Folk School blog post... here's the link.

I'm still intending to upload many more photos from the week.  Trouble is that I have too many to easily upload to an online album.  I'm going to have to do some editing--hard to do!

Kudzu is growing again the the studio, though.  Maybe I should post a photo of that as proof--only I don't know where my camera is right now.  Tomorrow, I'll surely find it tomorrow!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

The wonderful week at the Folk School ends

The last day of the class is always frantic with students completing the weaving of their tapestries, cutting them off the looms (to applause from all), tucking and trimming ends at the back, and finishing off for display.  Most were mounted on a fabric-covered foam core board that Lena Grace prepared for each, measured to fit their individual tapestries.

A show of works from different studios ends the week's experience at the Folk School.  Everyone loves to see what's been happening in other workshops since often it's hard to get around during the week to see others at work.  The tapestry display table was the star of the show (of course, other teachers and students felt their own display was the star--actually there were stars all around on Friday afternoon!)

I'll try to assemble more of the last day's photos in an album in a few days.  I've unpacked the boxes and bins I took for class and that's taken most of today.  I've got to get back to the kudzu tapestry so don't have time for uploading to an album right now.  I really enjoyed meeting all who were there and hope I'll see them again in the future!

Here's the happy group of tapestry weavers at the end of the wonderful week at 
John C. Campbell Folk School, April 2, 2010.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Day Four--is it really almost over?!

Oh, my goodness… what a great class this is! Every one of the eleven in the JCFS class is taking her tapestry in a different direction—and each one is beautiful in its own way. I’m so happy that the week has progressed as it has with everyone moving the basic techniques I’ve introduced into a tapestry with design of their own choosing. I really hope the basic few skills and principles they’re being introduced to here at the Folk School will “take” for them in the future if they want to continue with tapestry.

I’m sharing with them a few of the things about tapestry that I’ve learned from teachers I've had through the past years, with Archie Brennan and Susan Martin Maffei as principal among those. I’ve gained so much knowledge from many sources through the past twenty-two years I’ve been weaving tapestry, and Archie and Susan have made the biggest impact in my tapestry life. I think of what I’ve learned from them every day that I weave tapestry—and this is not an exaggeration. I come to a decision place and I think, “What would Archie do?” or “How would Susan say this should be done… ” These two people have been the main influence in my tapestry making and I hope I adequately express that when I teach workshops. All I share comes from others--thank you to all of my teachers—I hope I can pass on just a bit of what you’ve so graciously given me.

Here are a few photos from today--the fourth day of class as concentration ruled the day in the room...

... mid-day a demo for warping in a continuous way took some Karen and Lena give it a go.

My husband sent a beautiful box of chocolates along with me to share with students and I thought April 1 would be the best time to offer them up!
Jackie is totally into her weaving at this point and she's creating a wonderfully whimsical landscape, complete with apple tree.

Lena Grace and Penny talk about Penny's weaving.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

John C. Campbell Folk School Tapestry Class Continues...

This is such a great group of people who've come together at Brasstown for the class. They're compatible with each other (as well as with me & Lena Grace) and all want to push themselves a bit--always good for a learning situation.

Jackie develops her design to continue the initial sampling area...

and her charming landscape full of color began to grow.

Jeanne also chose to develop a planned design based on the sampling and to continue to build a long weaving.

Karen decided to celebrate her experiences at the Folk School with a small tapestry of the landscape she sees daily.

Lisa concentrates on making her design concept work with the sett of 8 epi...

and then she makes some initial color decisions...