meta name="p:domain_verify" content="c874e4ecbd59f91b5d5f901dc03e5f82"/>


Thursday, June 27, 2019

Finding A Rhythm.

I  recently watched a documentary on the work of Sean Scully.  I didn't particularly like his work...or so I thought... but I found his process fascinating, and not unlike my own.  He works with stripes or blocks of colour, and I found myself thinking, I need to do that.  Let the fabric speak for itself. Needed to be hand dyes, I thought, needed to be in some way related to each other.  Minimal stitch, I thought, and went through my really very limited selection of hand dyes (ironic, given that most of my stash was my own hand dyes...), and put together three tops.  I thought I would machine quilt them, but when I ran out of hand work, I thought...maybe...   So I fished one out.  This one, to be precise.

Reader, I didn't like it.  (For those of us who like to know these things, a piece of rust dyed muslin on the top, hand dyed muslin (of a different, slightly heavier weight), in the middle and a piece of commercial fabric on the bottom, the only piece of fabric I could find to go with the other two).  The problem?  Firstly, I didn't like the shape, and felt the strips were too wide.  Secondly, I couldn't work out how to stitch them.  Third, I couldn't see a way to make them hang together in a cohesive whole. 

I turned them round.

That felt a bit better, but still, the problem of the width of the bands of colour, and the shape.  The thought of dismantling the whole thing, changing the width of the bands and sewing it all back together, just didn't appeal.  There was, however,  distinct problem with getting all three fabrics to relate together.  Each way I looked at it, I felt as if tow of the three bands sat together well but all three, didn't.  I needed to find a solution, to pull the whole thing together.  Oh, and did I say?  It didn't feel like mine....which is perhaps not surprising, given that usually, my ideas come from my own personal landscape, where this one had come from considering someone else's.  So, reader, this is what I did.

The fabric is all a bit darker than in this image...but... The wool is couched onto the top, reflecting the swirls in all three fabrics, but taking their own path, not following anything already existing in the cloth.  I would have preferred to have hand felted the wool down, but that's not really an option now, so I used an apricot coloured thread that matches some of the apricot colours in the fabric to the right.  I then found some brown variegated thread to quilt the rust dyed section, with colours from all three pieces of cloth, and then what?  My original intention was to stitch with a darker thread, but that didn't seem right.  And there needed to be something else in that upper right hand area, to make it more interesting.  So I cut a circle from a piece of Lutradur that had been dyed orange, and stitched it on.  I then found a very pale variegated thread to stitch round the resulting curves, on a much larger scale than the earlier stitch.

I have to say, this was not at all what I intended, but I think it resolves all the problems I identified with the piece.  What's more, it relates nicely to many of the drawings in my sketchbook over the years, and some of the work I've done in the past.  There's a tiny example here .  I'm pleased, even if it wasn't what I intended.  And it's a bit cluttered, perhaps.  It is, however, definitely mine: I don't think Sean Scully, were he ever to see it, would recognise his influence.  And that's how it should be.  Now for the other two.

Oh, and as a's called Rhythms. 

No comments: