Tuesday, December 20, 2011

fidelity honesty kindness love - stage 1

 a new piece i started in the murk midnight - at the moment i am gripped by post project sore throat virus and insomnia, which is crap for being happy and work-eager in the morning but quite good for uninterrupted studio time (glass half-full, glass half-full)

the title of this piece came from a conversation kind dog and i had a few months ago about what were the essentials for a relationship - it came down to these
the words are embroidered on silk organza; then there is a layer of linen napkin with the rather nasty mould green edging torn off; a slice of op shop linen doily of some kind and a slice of cotton napkin. pinned to a large piece of artist's linen.
once the stitching is done, it will get a light gesso-ing with either a brayer or a dry brush (i'll see how the spirit moves me at the time), and then it will be stretched. at the moment i'm thinking of keeping it white and textured but again the Muse may have different ideas and tell me peremptorily what is required.
we'll see...

and another jealousy piece is brewing - this one with added hydras.....

Thursday, December 15, 2011

while we're reminiscing and updating.....

last year i said this about me......

2011 version:

  1. i like having crimson purple toe nails
  2. i hate bad manners - tick
  3. i am a grammar-phile and an apostrophe nazi - tick and have found soul mate in Kind Dog who shares my grammar prejudices right thinking
  4. i'm afraid of heights, and other people's anger - still a heightophobe but can deal better now with anger because i expect is less (again thanks to Kind Dog, who shows me constantly that anger is not inevitable)
  5. i love sleeping in - tick
  6. hell is having nothing to read (as well as other people) - God, yes
  7. colour IS its own reward - yup
  8. tea is a great restorative - yup and KD's coffee
  9. chocolate is a great comfort - the biggest change. i have kicked the sugar habit, folks and feel a gazillion times better for it
  10. love is all you really need - yes yes YES

hey, remember this?

as reported here

well, in the interests of truthful reporting i need to tell you that my back is better :) i found a brilliant osteopath who doesn't do crunchy things to your vertebrae but is stern on the matter of doing your exercises.

so my back is stronger and happier; i no longer live in fear of hurting it by doing reckless things like pushing supermarket trolleys.

looking back over other posts this time last year, i can also report that 12 months on i am no longer troubled by demons in the night nor the scars in my soul, which are still there but not quite so scarifying. painful things have been tackled and worked through this year - the motto for 2011 could be keep pushing, don't give up.

the motto for 2012 - renewal, reinvent, reorient.

time to hop out of the cocoon.....

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

brunswick street gallery 40x40 show

i will have 2 pieces in the brunswick street gallery's 40x40 show which opens in brunswick st fitzroy next week.
heart of palm - hand-painted cotton, linen and silk; palm tree bark; silk and cotton thread; and oil stick. (30.5x30.5cm)

blue#1  -  paper; foil; gesso; salt; oil paint; ink; copper wire; polyster net and silk and cotton threads. (28x35.5cm)

both pieces are mounted on canvas and ready to hang.the exhibition runs from 21 December until 13 January.

Monday, December 12, 2011

on a lighter note

kind dog and i went to cloudehill yesterday and spent a soothing time walking around the lush gardens and marvelling at the colours and textures

Sunday, December 11, 2011

once more, with words

i meant to tell you what was what in that last post but found it too difficult. these are very painful and soothing to make - a good healing process but it also means poking around in a very painful place that i have avoided for years.

but i will take you through the mechanics of making these little talismans without dwelling too much on the meaning.
first i take an arm's length of plumber's hemp - forming it into a figure eight around my left thumb and little finger
 i take a strip torn from an old linen napkin
then carefully and gently i wrap and fold the linen around the little body, tucking and smoothing as i go to make it as comfortable as possible.
 like swaddling a small baby to soothe and reassure it.
keep wrapping and tucking until i come to the end of the strip, then hold the end with a pin and start stitching it safely into a bundle, held safe.

i made another larger talisman too - this time using some eucalyptus dyed silk. 
this one is 9 inches long - the smaller ones are between four and five inches.

Thursday, December 01, 2011


i have been asked about the talismans of my previous post. what are they? how big are they? how did i make them? what do they mean?

a talisman is a something which has meaning or significance for the holder. these small talismans (small enough to fit into my palm) have enormous significance for me - each one stands for a baby i miscarried between July 23 1992 and September 9 2003. eight babies who were too small to have any significance for the world - remembered only by me. unable to be wrapped and shrouded and held and buried and given the dignity of naming and ritual.

so this is the start of my real, allowed mourning:  eight tiny shrouds. talismanic and powerful. real, able to be held.
 tomorrow i will tell you how i made them - tonight they are here, named and signified.