Last Friday night my husband and I attended the opening reception for a landscape art show called Against The Sky because my “Sunset On Main” was juried into the show. I was glad my piece overcame the attitude that a quilt can’t be art, though my piece was indeed the only fiber art in the show.
After I checked out all the other work in the show and had some lively conversations about my work, the show awards were announced by the show’s juror. He began with the honorable mentions, which I thought maybe I had a shot at. No joy there. Then third and second place works were announced and I thought it was enough to get into the show.
My jaw hit the floor when the juror awarded first place to “Sunset On Main.” There was some talk about how a craft can become art, but I was too stupified to take in all the speech.
Here are the few photos I took at the show. The crowd didn’t seem to be taking pictures, so I snuck in just a bit of smart phone photography.
As you can see, there was lots of photography in the show; I’d say about half of the 69 works.
And what do I get as first place winner? – a certificate and a little sticker by my work. It’s a start.
Way back at the beginning of 2018 I set myself a few quilting goals. One was to have my work accepted in an art show, not just a quilt show. To that end I mounted “Sunset on Main” on a prestretched canvas in hopes that would appeal more to an art show juror. Such a presentation precluded any usual quilt show entries with their “must show your work” rules about quilt backs.
I’ll know more about the other entries after I attend the opening reception this Friday night from 5-8 p.m. From the few I saw when I took in my piece it will be an interesting mixture of media.
So, if you’re planning to be in downtown Akron on Thursday, Friday, or Saturday afternoons, stop by. Summit Artspace at 140 East Market Street is a block from the Akron Art Museum. Specific hours are 12-7 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays, and 12-5 p.m. Saturdays. Special Artwalk hours are from 12-9 p.m. on Thursday, November 3.
Early in December I got a call from a friend about putting my work in an upcoming clay and fiber art exhibit in need of entries. And could I bring my pieces that day before 6 p.m. It was then about 3:30 in the afternoon.
One thing I have plenty of is quilts. One thing I have little of is quilts with hanging sleeves. I tend to sew them in for exhibits or for gifts, long after the quilts are made. So, I found two small quilts with hanging sleeves already on them and took them in for the Summit Artspace Thread & Mud exhibit by Artists of Rubber City.
The exhibit actually looks much nicer than I expected, with that short notice. I suspect it simply wasn’t well publicized. Certainly I hadn’t heard about it, even though I’m on the Artspace’s mailing list.
Here are my entries: (At The) Feet of Klee (center) and The Big Bang (right.) The latter is well lit so all the metallic threads I used glitter. Unfortunately, it’s not a photogenic quilt. Susan McClory’s Primary Waves is on the left.
Here are some other pieces in the show.
Slant by Jessica PinskyUntitled #1 and #2 by Jamie Suvak3—2–1– by Susan McCloryAn Embroidery of Wishful Thinking by Shirley Ende-Saxe
I wanted to have more showings of my work this year, which is why I said why not when this show came along. If I had had more time I would have chosen different quilts, which should be a lesson to me. Always sew a hanging sleeve on your work when it’s done.
My husband was puzzled when I told him I was headed out for an arashi shibori demonstration. He was even more puzzled when I told him I was going to watch someone remove color from cloth using a pole, string and bleach. I suspect he thought I’d also enjoy watching paint dry.
So, for his and possibly your benefit, here’s what arashi shibori is about. Fine, overall patterns are created in cloth by wrapping it diagonally around a pole, winding a thread around it at measured intervals, compressing the cloth into tiny, tight folds, and dyeing it. (definition from Yoshiko Iwamoto Wada)
The demo I attended used bleach to remove color from wrapped cloth, rather than add color with dye. Local artist Kris Kapenekas shared her fabric discharge techniques at Summit ArtSpace, and her fabric samples were inspiring. She was generous with advice and handouts.
The background of this piece and the one above were discharged, then overdyed. The leaves are made of cotton velveteen that was discharged.
All the leaves are embellished with beads.
Each of the numbers in “Homage to Robert Indiana” was made of discharged black fabric. You can see the wide color variations that result from bleach discharging.
I did indeed go home and play around with discharge paste I picked up years ago at a quilt show. The pole wrapping and bleach discharge await the purchase of more supplies. Funny how I always need to buy more stuff.
Every so often us folks in the hinterlands get to enjoy a local fiber art exhibit. That’s the arty stuff, with nary a quilt show judge in sight checking for binding errors.
Recently, a friend and I attended the opening of Converging Visions at Summit ArtSpace in downtown Akron. The show, which runs through July 27, features eight artists who began Contemporary Fiber Artists (CFA) in 1994. The group’s original intent was for continued and varying dialogue in the arts, support for each others’ artistic goals and encouragement of creative development.
Anatomy of a Matisse by Kathryn Levy
The media on display range from cloth, to beads and stones, to metal, to paper; with some knitting thrown in. I may have accidentally left out some of the materials used or simply not been able to identify them. Inspiration came from artists such as Mondrian and Matisse, backyard tomato plants, winter, current events, and medical imagery. And while many of the items were designed to hang on walls, others could be worn.
So Sew by Jean Evans
Abracadabra by Jean Markowitz
There are workshops and demos associated with this exhibit, as described at the Summit Art Space website. And it’s all FREE! But wait, there’s more. If you go to the exhibit, take the elevator to the third floor to visit the studios of local artists (one is local art quilter Connie Bloom) and take in a display of fanciful millinery in an exhibit called Millinery As Sculpture.