Monday, October 19, 2009

Festival of Quilts, UK

I’m happy to say that Dominie Nash and I are going to have a show/exhibition of our quilts at the Festival of Quilts in Birmingham, UK next August.  And, of course, I have to write an artist statement!!  To be sure, it will be succinct!
Before that we have to think up a title…I’m all in favour of the minimalist approach to titles for shows but something catchy or clever seems to be in vogue and also de rigueur!  yes, you guessed it..I think they’re redundant, but what can I say?  I was told my approach to this was “boring”!! (which, by the way, was the only word my children were forbidden to say when young!).

So I’ve been looking at Dominie’s and my work to figure out similarities and differences.  Dominie has been working on a series of still lifes…that she thoughtfully calls “Stills from a Life” – I like her anagrammatic thinking!   Here’s a typical example:

nash interlocking still

I’ve been focusing on two main themes this last year: industrial landscapes, their unexpected, often unseen, beauty and the sharp contrast between the industrial artifacts and the natural landscape.  The other focus has been more more a abstract (at times playful) examination of the patterns and forms seen in  old timbered buildings. 

what lovely smoke full

On the left,
What Pretty Smoke!  separateandtogether


On the right:
Separate and Together.







We have both taken somewhat unexpected approaches to the kinds of subjects usually seen in art quilts, but almost from opposite angles. 
Dominie is concerned with the interior life…the intertwining interlocking elements and the puzzle of arranging them into a satisfying relationship:
It’s surprising to look at  familiar objects in a new context,such as setting up a still life composition. Often the homeliest or most ordinary things have the most  interesting shapes and patterns when abstracted and made to interact with each other.”

I’m more of an outdoor person…and very restless.  I’m both concerned about environmental issues but also intrigued by the beauty of old industrial landscapes;  I deplore the destruction of  natural beauty, but also the pulling down (or blowing up!) of monuments like the old colliery winding wheels, the strange pipes and gantries of archaic power or chemical plants…I love the beauty of the old mills with their rows of elegant windows and great towering chimneys.  I need to walk around looking at all the angles, clambering up and down…I especially like a distant view.  

With the more abstract black and white timbering work, it’s the puzzle of balancing the restless churning flow of the beams that fascinates.   So now I need to distill all of the above into about three words!!  All suggestions gratefully received!!   If you have been, thanks for reading…..Elizabeth

PS Come and see us!  Gallery G28!!!   18th or 19th to the 21st of August, 2010


Jane Moxey said...

Congratulations on the upcoming exhibition in England! I'm wondering if the words Exterior, Interior, Impression(s) might be woven into a statement about the works you'll be showing? Nice wordsmithing challenge for you both to blend the themes of your works and the ideas and feelings expressed into a succint phrase or two. I shall look forward to reading what you finally come up with. Best of British luck with that job!

Linda B. said...

Excellent news - will you be teaching as well?

Jackie said...

What a delightful show! I've seen both and would enjoy them together. Now, how to get there... Please forgive me but the phrases came--Inside & Out or Outside & In to continue Dominie's play on words and represent both bodies of work.

Ruth said...

It seems that you are both working on the beauty in things that most people don't take the time to notice. I haven't really got a good title but something to do with "unseen patterns" or "forms not noticed" or some such thing would work. Congrats on your show and I wish I could be there.

Sandra Wyman said...

Oooh good - look forward to this.

Nina Marie said...

Congrats on the show - not only does that sound fun to do one in your home country but also to partner with Domini is such a bonus! My suggestion for the show title is - "Enigmatic Unexpected Allure" (I know - weird - but that's what came out of my brain - sigh!)

magsramsay said...

Having seen your work for the first time 'in the flesh' at the SAQA stand at FoQ I'm looking forward to seeing more!
Snappy titles are so difficult to achieve without seeming pretentious.

Tracey said...

Good news. I'm looking forward to seeing it already! Hows about "Inside Out" as a title for it?

marjay said...

I am so pleased to read that you will be exhibiting at the FOQ. I live in New Zealand and France and despaired of ever seeing your work in the flesh. I have long admired your textiles and writings and am thrilled that at long last I will be able to see the art works in real life. I am not a fan of the big quilt shows having experienced them in all their mad hoopla in New Zealand, Australia and France but will swallow my aversion and go over to see your work.

Marni Goldshlag said...

How about "Inside Out" for a title?
Marni Goldshlag

Clare Wassermann said...

wow well done - I shall look forward to seeing your work in real life