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Accepted into Art Quilts

I am  thrilled to announce that two of my works have been accepted for Art Quilts, a juried exhibit of the  California and Nevada regions of Studio Art Quilt Associates. The call for this exhibit simply stated that “Art Quilts…seeks to display outstanding contemporary textiles created by SAQA regional members from both the Southern CA/Southern NV region and Northern CA/Northern NV region. There is no specific theme to interpret for this exhibit.” I don’t know how many art quilts were entered for the exhibit but 64 pieces by 49 artists were accepted. (Update: 296 pieces were entered for this exhibition.)

The two selected pieces for the exhibit are Broken Ginkgos IV

and Precious Metals II.

 

You may wonder how an Oregon resident is able to participate in such an exhibit. As a member of SAQA, I am able to align myself with two regions: the region I live in and a second region of my choice. I chose to retain my membership in the Northern California/Northern Nevada region.

The exhibit will be featured first at the

California Heritage Museum
December 8, 2017 – March 18, 2018
Opening Reception: December 9, 2017
2612 Main Street
Santa Monica, CA 90405

The California Heritage Museum  is committed to promoting the diversity and rich history of California’s heritage through exhibitions, lectures, publications and community events.

The second venue is the

Carnegie Arts Center
April 4 – May 27, 2018
Opening Reception: April 5, 2018 6 – 8 p.m.
250 North Broadway
Turlock, CA 95380

The Carnegie Arts Center in the city of Turlock is an arts center that is both local and regional in its perspective.  It operates according to core values and in keeping with its mission of bringing diverse community and regional audiences together to experience and celebrate art in all its forms. The Carnegie’s programs include exhibitions, education classes and programs, lectures, and activities in artistic genres as diverse as dance, music, theater and more.

I hope that you will be able to attend one of these exhibits.

Artist Reception at Firehouse Arts Center

I attended the artist reception at the Firehouse Arts Center in Pleasanton last night. It was the opening day for exhibits including the California Watercolor Association  — 75 artists had work hung — photo montage and collage artist, Deborah Griffin, and me. Click on image for larger view.

01-15-15-Artist-reception-5

Yes, the center is a former firehouse, ca. 1888. Today, this state-of-the-art building is a 20,000 sq. ft. cultural arts center featuring a 227-seat theater, a 2,000 sq. ft. fine arts gallery, an 1,800 sq. ft. classroom space, and an hourglass shaped grand lobby that links downtown Pleasanton to the center’s Parkside patio and an adjacent park.

I was thrilled to have my work featured in the grand lobby with 5 art quilts

01-15-15 Artist reception 1

and an alcove upstairs with another 5 art quilts. A bridge walkway is the final entrance to this alcove (note the pole).

01-15 Firehouse Artist reception-7

01-15-15-upstairs

The evening was buzzing with energy. There were many questions about my fiber art.

01-15-15-Firehouse-Artist-reception-6

And I was happy to answer every one of them.

01-15-15-Artist-reception-4

I was glad to receive a copy of a newspaper article about the exhibit from the gallery curator.

01-15 The Independent article about ehxibit

The arts are alive and well in Pleasanton.

 

If Ginkgos Could Talk for The 100

If Ginkgos Could Talk, 8" x 8" matted 12" x 12"

If Ginkgos Could Talk is ready to go to its new home. Click on image for a larger view. This is my contribution to Virginia Spiegel’s ACS Fundraiser The 100. This one-day event happens on February 4th. It’s not too early to mark your calendar because the first 100 patrons to sign up and contribute $100 will receive a randomly selected original artwork, made and donated by an invited artist.  When they’re gone, they’re gone. The money raised from this one day will push the total for Fiberart for a Cause to a cool quarter million dollars.  For a preview of the outstanding work made to date, check the Pinterest page being curated by Deborah Boschert here.

If Ginkgos Could Talk is 8″ x 8″ matted to 12″ x 12″, ready to be framed. (Pictures enlarge when clicked.) A description of the piece is attached to the back. The ginkgo is thread painted and surrounded by dense quilting. A simple line of beads and bold outline stitching at the corners frame and finish this piece.

If Ginkgos Could Talk, detail

I have long been enthralled with the ginkgo leaf. Every time I use this simple leaf as a design element in a quilt, I fall more deeply in love with it. The order to which the ginkgo belongs first appeared 250 million years ago. The rate of evolution within the genus has been slow, and almost all its species had become extinct by the end of the Pliocene (5.3-2.5 million years ago); the exception is the sole living species, Ginkgo biloba, which is only found in the wild in China, but is cultivated across the world. Imagine the stories the ginkgo could tell!

FFAC2015logoGreat art donated for a great cause — another win/win situation you could be a part of. Mark your calendar now so you can add to your art collection.

This posting is linked to Off the Wall Friday.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Happy Creative New Year

My last posting was on Christmas Day. From there daily events took over and I missed my usual schedule of posting. It happens. I’m over it.

I’m on to the new year now. I know it’s official because I just took the first images of 2015 and created a folder for them. Here is a peek at what is moving and shaking in my world.

I don’t think I’ve mentioned the revision that I made to Hand of the Artist. I’m a member of a critique group which meets monthly. I shared this piece with them and one of the members suggested a slight change in arranging some of the beads. I played with the idea and liked it a lot. Click on image for a larger view.

Hand of the artist, changesThe change is rather subtle: a number of the turquoise beads have been moved to form small clusters. You can see the original design by clicking on the link above.

I put the final touches on Black Oak and printed a label for it.

Black Oak label

And just in time, too, because it goes to the photographer tomorrow (along with Hand of the Artist).

I’m working on a piece that was begun in Lorie McCown‘s class in Tahoe. I removed the original straight-line stitching (you can see the white marking line which is not permanent) and stitched large free-motion loops over the surface. Then I started cutting out circles.

Work in progress

Right now I don’t know which end is up on this piece — literally. I’m simply putting down one thing, then the next, making decisions as I go about color and stitches. I’m enjoying hand stitching and the go-with-the-flow approach I’ve adopted for this small piece. I’m keeping the stitches simple

Work in progress, detail 2

and will let the work tell me what it needs.

Work in progress, detail 1

I have been seriously missing sketching and watercolor work. Somehow I let the time for that creative pleasure vanish. I’m resuming the on-line class with Val Webb for sketching cats and dogs later this month (I had to drop out of it because I was over committed. I know that doesn’t happen to you!). I’m so looking forward to her instruction and getting back into a regular habit of sketching.

I have also signed up for an on-line class on blogging with WordPress. Yes, I’ve been doing this for a while but I know that I’ll learn from the class and it will also help me get back into the swing of regularly writing.

Some of the artists that I follow have a practice of adopting a single word as a mantra for the year — an interesting prompt. I’m not sure that I’m ready to do that, but if I did, my word (at least for now) would be DAILY. I am a person who thrives on order and schedules. The kind of habit I seek is not only good for my psychic well-being, it means that I am productive in the creative areas I choose.

New lessons don’t begin for a few days though, but there is no reason not to pick up a pencil and paint brush now. This charming teacup was a gift from a dear friend many years ago.

teacup

I’m off to sketch!

What are you doing to get 2015 off to its creative start?

Ginkgos in the Round Accepted for VAM Exhibit

I am thrilled to share the news that Ginkgos in the Round will be part of Visions Art Museum’s website exhibit Stories.

Ginkgos in the Round, 12" x 12", 2014, For Sale

Ginkgos in the Round, 12″ x 12″, 2014, For Sale

VAM invited its artist-level members to submit their work for on-line exhibits this year. See the first two exhibits — Wild Thing! and Up/Down — here. I applaud their continuing and creative ways of getting the word out about the relevance of contemporary fiber art.

Stories is scheduled to be live January 1, 2015. Be sure to check it out — I’m bound to be in great company!

Ginkgo Dust Up Headed to Dili, Timor Leste

I am thrilled to announce that as part of the U. S. Department of State Art in Embassies program, Ginkgo Dust Up will be on exhibit in the U.S. Embassy residence in Dili, Timor Leste, beginning this spring.

Ginkgo Dust Up, 27 1/2" x 54 3/4", 2009, For SaleThe curator for this exhibit explained that the theme for the new exhibition is fiber art.

Fiber plays an important role in the culture of East Timor; their Tais cloth is a form of traditional weaving created by women and used for a variety of purposes. We think that the people of East Timor will be interested in seeing and learning about American textiles.

The Art in Embassies program was founded in 1963 with the mission of creating exhibitions of original art for display in the public rooms of the U. S. diplomatic residences worldwide. The residences serve as centers for official state functions, and the exhibitions provide tangible focal points around which to build public outreach. Each exhibition becomes a part of the ambassador’s cultural mission.

I applaud the new ambassador’s focus on Tais cloth and Fiber art, both  significant contributions of the women of East Timor and the United States, to their cultural heritages. I am honored to be a part of an exhibit whose purpose is outreach and education between cultures.

“The 100” Fundraiser is coming!

FFAC2015logoI am honored to be an invited artist for “The 100” to be held on Wednesday, February 4, 2015. The goal for this fiber fundraiser for the American Cancer Society is to raise $10,000 in one day.

How? Yes, once again Virginia Spiegel is at it!  Fiberart For A Cause has already raised $240,000 through the generosity of fiber artists and patrons. In 2015, her goal is to bump that amount up to a quarter of a million dollars.

I’m sure you will want to be one of the very exclusive 100 patrons who will be randomly assigned artwork from an extraordinary line-up of international fiber artists.

All the details are here: http://www.virginiaspiegel.com/FFACThe100Fundraiser.html

 

 

Rain and Quilting

These two are a natural — rain and quilting. Here in Northern California we’re well into our worst drought on record so we’re especially happy to see the rain. Everything in the garden looks hopeful with a clean face. Click on an image for a larger view.

Sorrel, blood veined Blueberries in bloom Climbing camelia Cotoneaster Mandarin oranges PansiesAnd while the garden was getting a bath, I started quilting on Black Oak, a top I completed in August.

Black Oak being quiltedThis is part of my series on Native California plants. See the entire piece here.

More rain is predicted over the next few days so I am determined to make serious progress on this piece. Stay tuned.

Hand of the Artist

I was at Art Quilt Tahoe last week taking a class with Lorie McCown. Lorie is a fiber artist and a painter so she brings a lot to the table. She is keen on creating work that reveals the hand of the artist. Her work is created by layering fabric which is held together with some machine stitches, but primarily hand stitches. She and I share an interest in how we create the quilt line in our work — I felt there was something to learn from Lorie.

Right away I was out of my comfort zone. Lorie uses a scissors for some cutting work but never a rotary cutter and mat and usually she snips and tears fabric. So, okay, I’m there to learn, so I dove in, snipping and tearing fabric and placing it on a background. Then I caved a bit, placed tulle on top of the 2 layers of fabric, batting and backing, and quilted the entire surface. This provided a nice flat surface to begin layering a design.

Here is where I dove into my box of threads: embroidery floss, yarn, hand-dyed collections from Oliver Twists and more. I was ready for the comfort of hand work. I started by couching down some hand-dyed ribbon, then moved on to other designs, working back and forth between hand stitching and hand-cutting leaves that I stitched onto the surface by hand. Lorie shared her method for leaf construction — it creates a leaf with real dimension.

Leaf detailI got to a certain point and knew that I had gone as far as I could: the next step needed beads and I didn’t have any with me. I was so in the moment that I completely forgot to take progressive photographs of the process. Here is the completed piece (Click on the image for a larger view):

Hand of the ArtistHand of the Artist measures 14 3/4″ x 15 3/4″. The list of materials is very long for this small piece: commercial and hand-dyed cotton, hand-dyed and silk-screened silk, hand-painted cheese cloth, tulle; commercial cotton embroidery thread, hand-dyed cotton embroidery thread, yarn; beads.

The bead leaves are heavy and thick and getting them to remain where I stitched them turned into quite a puzzle. I stitched several on using what I always use for beads: size D nymo thread. I didn’t like the thread showing and it allowed the beads to twirl. Off they came. I had to use a method that would keep them secure, no matter the orientation I placed them in. Aha! I said. Embroidery stitches. This allowed me to use some of Els van Baarle‘s hand-dyed embroidery thread (She was teaching at AQT and I bought several hanks of her thread.).

Els van Baarle embroidery-threadI used 2 strands of thread and a small embroidery needle. I came up through the hole in the bead, took a stitch to the right of the base, catching the top 2 layers of material and batting, coming up an equal distance to the other side of the base, then down through the hole to the back. Needle back up through the hole again, I created a double Colonial Knot (I stacked 2 Colonial Knot stitches on top of one another to create the depth I needed using a light-weight embroidery thread.) and tied it off on the back. I prefer the Colonial Knot to the French Knot because the Colonial Knot will stay upright and stationary wherever it is stitched — no falling over on its side like the French Knot. I first tried a single Colonial Knot but when I pulled the thread snug to the back of the quilt the knot slid through the hole — a double knot was necessary.

Hand of the Artist, detailThe leaf beads look as though they are wearing a necklace. Kind of charming. Most important, though, is that the stitches are intentional, serve their purpose and look good. Success!

This post is linked to Off the Wall Friday. Check out what other fiber artists are up to there.

 

 

 

Arts Guild of Sonoma 2014 Invitational

I’m the lucky recipient of an opportunity to hang a piece of my art work at the 2014 Arts Guild of Sonoma December Invitational! This will be the second year I’ve received such an invitation thanks to Carol Larson, my friend and member of the Guild. You can see a portion of last years’ exhibit here.

Sunflower Scrap I will be part of a Salon-style installation in the front gallery.

Franki Kohler, Sunflower Scrap I, 12" x 12", 2012, For SaleArts Guild of Sonoma

140 E. Napa St, Sonoma, CA 95476

Open Wed-Mon, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.

Artist Reception: Friday, December 5th, 6 – 8 p.m.

I hope to see you there!

 

 

 

1000 Quilt Inspirations Update

In early March I learned that my work will be a part of 1000 Quilt Inspirations, edited by Sandra Sider and published by Quatro Publishing Group USA.

1000 Quilt Inspirations, Book Cover The book is scheduled for release February 2015. Part of the publisher’s teaser reads:

As one of the core, traditional crafts, quilting is enjoyed by countless enthusiasts around the world – and its popularity is only growing. This collection of one thousand quilt details builds upon this interest, showcasing some of today’s most innovative and beautiful work.

I have no idea which work or works I submitted will appear in the book so I’ll be interested to receive a copy next year.

SAQA Auction 2014

Each year Studio Art Quilt Associates (SAQA) holds an on-line auction as a fund-raiser. Members of SAQA donate a 12″ x 12″ art quilt for the auction and purchases help to increase the recognition of art quilts and the artists who make them while supporting SAQA’s exhibitions, publications, and education outreach. Thanks to donors and bidders in 2013, the Benefit Auction raised over $65,000!

This year I was the very lucky bidder on two quilts. I’m so excited to share them here.

Here is Sing Praise by Suzanne Kistler. Click on image for a larger view.

Sing Praise by Suzanne Kistler, 12" x 12"Be sure to click on the image for that larger view where you’ll be able to see the details! Frankly, the image on the auction page didn’t reveal the wonderful scattering of beads on this art quilt. What a nice surprise it was to see this piece up close!

Sing Praise, detail 2This art quilt has a machine-pieced background, hand appliqued/hand embroidered bird. The beak, feet, outline and contour of the wing are all hand embroidered. A very nice touch. It is machine quilted and hand beaded.

Sing Praise,detail 1The back was clearly thought out and coordinates nicely with the design on the front. Notice how the quilting of the bird pops out.

Sing Praise, backAnd the label makes it easy to get in touch with the artist — very appreciated.

Sing Praise, LabelAnd here is Simply, Simply by Heidi Zielinski.

Simplify, Simplify by Heidi ZielinskiHeidi used hand-dyed cotton fabrics, free-motion stitching and beading around the edges to create this mini masterpiece. The back coordinates nicely with the design of the art quilt.

Simplify, Simplify, backAnd, again, a clear label makes it easy to contact the artist.

Simplify,Simplify, labelI couldn’t be more pleased with these two art quilts. They are truly stunning and I feel so fortunate to have been able to purchase them.

 

Ginkgos in the Round Fini

I have made it a practice not to begin something new until I have completed the current project and most of the time I stick to that habit. I’m very glad that I broke from my routine and created Ginkgos in the Round.  It was a very satisfying project which I think could yield a fun series.

Ginkgos in the Round, 12" x 12", 2014, For SaleIt measures 12″ x 12″. I used a fat quarter of hand-dyed fabric and more than a full spool (164 yards to the spool) of 50-weight silk-finish cotton thread. And yes, I opened the spool for this project and had to go to the store to buy another spool to complete the thread painting.

A  detail

Ginkgos in the Round, detailYou can read about my shaky beginning here.

This posting is linked to Off the Wall Fridays.

Ginkgos in the Round

I’m in the midst of a couple large projects and seem to be moving slowly on them. In the course of working, though, ideas keep crowding my mind. I truly believe that the more one creates, the more ideas come to mind — sometimes, though, it’s a bit overwhelming. One of the ideas I was contemplating called very loudly to me so I decided to listen to myself and take a little detour.

I haven’t designed with ginkgo leaves in a while, but the images seem to float in my subconscious all the time. I was thinking about a class I took with Libby Lehman many years ago. One of her exercises was to sketch simple shapes on paper — rectangle, square, triangle, for instance — then create designs within the shapes. I thought it would be fun to use a circle and fill it with ginkgo leaves.

I chose a hand-dyed fabric and started drawing. The blue lines (a little difficult to see here) will disappear with a spritz of water when I’m done thread painting. I like the variation in colors of the fabric and decided to create a bold contrast with a 50-weight, solid gray-blue thread.

Ginkgos marked, thread selectedI cleaned and oiled my machine and replaced the needle. Yes,  I make a habit of doing this after 8 hours of stitching and/or at the start of a new project. After all, I expect my hard-working machine to be there for me and I feel that this is my way of meeting it half way. Next I did a test drive of the design on a fabric sandwich with the same weight fabric and batting I’m using for my project. And, boy, was I ever glad I had! I’ve been using 60- and 100-weight threads recently and the settings on my machine didn’t work for the 50-weight thread at all. Whew. Bullet dodged.

I stitched 2 leaves, tied them off and began on the third leaf. Almost immediately I felt a drag on the machine and was having difficulty moving the fabric sandwich. Naturally, I stopped to check the bobbin. Here’s what I found:

Stitched to the SliderAs my sister says, there are those who have and those who will. Clearly it was time that I stitched my Supreme Slider into a project. And now that the experience is behind me I view it as a simple reminder to pay attention. It is so easy to become focused on moving ahead and forget that what’s going on under the needle right now is worth your full attention.

With the Slider removed and the tiny leaf stitched, it’s time to get back into the rhythm of thread painting.

Slider removed, small leaf stitched

Black Oak II Done

Black Oak II, the companion piece to Black Oak which is in progress, is done. Click on the image for a larger view.

Black Oak III tend to quilt every inch of background on my art quilts, but for this 12″ x 12″ art quilt, that didn’t feel like the way to proceed. I kept hearing ‘simplicity’ in my head so that was the approach taken. I like the thread sketching on the appliqued leaves and the simplicity of repeating those shapes as the quilted background. I also enjoy the ‘surprise’ of finding the quilted leaves in the darker fabric shapes. And with less quilting, it’s easier to appreciate the subtle design created in the sunprinting process (the golden fabric is left from the sunprint images I did for Black Oak).

This was a very satisfying experience and has definitely informed how I will approach the larger companion piece.

This is being shared at Off the Wall Friday — click on over there and check out what’s happening.

Black Oak

I’m still working on my Native California plant series. I completed the top for Black Oak which will finish about 26″ x 60″. I really enjoyed putting this one together using some of my ‘radiator series’ fabric created in Lonni Rossi’s surface design class at Asilomar, some rust fabric experiments and some sun prints. Once I pulled out a stack of likely-suspect fabrics to use, things just seemed to jump together for me — or did they? I loved the fabrics but something was wrong. Here’s where I pick up the camera and start taking pictures. It’s amazing what one sees on the computer that one cannot see on the wall. Click on image for a larger view.

Black Oak rejectThe large piece of rusted fabric on the left jumped out way too much. And the background doesn’t show at all. I took everything down and went shopping for a new background fabric. When I had the new background up the answers became clear. Here’s the final top.

Black Oak finalI’m thinking about how to quilt this piece.

While thinking about the series in general — there will be a minimum 3-5 large pieces —  I decided to expand the series. I’ll be making a foot-square piece as a ‘partner’ to each of the larger pieces using this pillar format. I’ll be using the same fabrics in each pair of quilts but I’ll use different techniques in the smaller ones. I think that the two sizes hung together could be a very interesting exhibit and working out issues in the smaller piece can lead to decisions for the larger pieces.

I’ve constructed the top for the foot-square Black Oak II piece. I’m allowing myself to think about just one section at a time, quilt it, then move on to the next section. Some days I just can’t tackle deciding on the whole top at once. It’s surprising how this one decision has relaxed me, allowing me to focus and just have fun.

Black oak Foot SquareI should have this piece completed very soon so stay tuned.

I’ve promised myself to go back to finishing my Sunflower Scrap VI piece — not done, but not forgotten! — before I turn to quilting the large Black Oak piece.

This posting has been shared at Off the Wall Friday. Click on over and see what’s happening there.

Oakleaf Hydrangea II Accepted

I’m very pleased to share that Oakleaf Hydrangea II has been juried into the 4th Annual International Juried & Judged Show and La Conner Quilt & Textile Museum, La Conner, WA. Click on image for larger view.

Oakleaf Hydrangea II, 28 1/4" x 26 1/4", 2013, For Sale

Oakleaf Hydrangea II, 28 1/4″ x 26 1/4″, 2013, For Sale

The exhibit will be on view

October 3-5, 2014
La Conner Maple Hall and the Civic Garden Club
703 South 2nd Street
La Conner, Washington
11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

The Museum is housed in the historic Gaches Mansion, a well-loved and preserved local treasure. Just seeing the mansion is quite a treat! But an international Quilt and Fiber Arts Festival held in it? Do I hear “road trip?”

Broken Ginkgos II Accepted for Pip Squeak

I’m very excited that Broken Ginkgos II has been accepted for the 12th annual international juried art show at Northbrook Public Library.

Broken Ginkgos II, 12"x12", 2012, For Sale

Broken Ginkgos II, 12″x12″, 2012, For Sale

This year’s theme, Pip Squeak, focuses on small works of art — not to exceed 12″ in any direction for 2D works and 9″ for 3D works. The Call states, in part

Pip Squeak is all about big vision in a small package. Big ideas do not always have to be big in stature and this show hopes to prove just that. Art will be judged on the merit of the art and the judge’s evaluation of the artist’s execution. Art can be in any media.

Awards include one purchase prize, 2nd place, 3rd place and Viewer’s Choice.

The exhibit will be

November 14 – December 19, 2014

Northbrook Public Library

1201 Cedar Lane, Northbrook, IL 60062

Opening Reception:  November 14, 7:00 p.m.

If you’re in the area, I hope you’ll stop by and enjoy the exhibit.