Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Following the thread

A crochet newsletter "Talking Crochet with Carol Alexander" arrived in my box and I followed some of the links. Indirectly it led to Carol Wiebe at Silversprings studio site by way of Joana Vasconcelas' work. I am in awe of both artists and their creations. But I returned to Carol's site when I saw the word: quilt.

Carol considers art a bridge and I happily cross the bridge into her country.

She somehow combines paper, crochet and quilts into her gorgeous and ingenious and thought-provoking projects. The one pictured here is titled Messengers and is 36x44-inches. She has worked on it for three years before adding it to her exhibit at Greenwood Quiltery in Ontario. Carol's art will hang in the gallery throughout October.

Carol writes about this piece: "The edges have a crocheted binding. The fabric is my own hand painted fabric. After quilting, I keep painting. The first time I painted onto a quilt that I had spent a lot of time stitching, I was really nervous. Now, I’m excited by it. You never know how the quilted surface and the paints and other products you put on it will interact. It’s a kind of “dangerous” serendipity that I’ve never regretted yet."

The saying in the quilt is one by Brenda Ueland who has a Wikipedia entry and is perhaps best known for her book "If You Want to Write: A Book about Art, Independence and Spirit"

"Think of yourself as an incandescent power, illuminated and perhaps forever talked to by God and his messengers." -- Brenda Ueland
And this is what Carol writes about the message of her Messenger quilt: "The messengers are gathering in prime formation: 2 butterflies, 3 dragonflies, 5 angels, 7 crows, 11 stars. To truly hear their message, you must kill the ego. Egos are wont to kill the messenger when they dislike the message they are receiving, but that is a useless tactic. The message will simply find you another way, through another messenger."

Finding this quilt and Carol's art has been serendipitous, precipitated by a need to knit which led to a search for easy patterns. I admit that my own creations certainly pale in comparison. This need manifests periodically, especially when I need a reprieve from the world. In this case the need coincided with my purchase of an audio book that I am thoroughly enjoying, but can't sit around empty handed while I listen. So I knit.

My first effort during this knitting marathon was made to use up yarn that I've had sitting around forever -- a huge ball raveled from unfinished projects time and again. This piece of knitting seems to serve as an unusual table runner. Then I discovered some cotton yarn that had been tucked away for at least a year. Of course that turned into a dishcloth. Those little suckers are addicting!

And now while digging around in my stash, I've rediscovered some exquisite cashmere and I don't know what else blend of yarn that feels so good to handle. At present it appears to be turning into a neck scarf. I will never make art. Certainly nothing to rival the beauty that Carol creates, but I think we both get similar feelings of joy from our creativity. And being a meat and potatoes kind of woman, I like the utilitarian aspects of what I've made.

Oh, and the audio book, purchased at Recorded Books online, with which I'm obsessed? "Voyager" by Diana Gabaldon of course.


Carol said...

Thanks for crossing the bridge, Penny. It's wonderful when someone enjoys one's work!

Dawn said...

Hi Carol,
Hope you enjoyed the blog as much as I admire your work

P.S. my name is Dawn....

Carol said...

So sorry, Dawn! I have no idea where I came up with the other name! And yes, I did enjoy looking through your blog!