Monday, June 02, 2008


Here is my newest 12x12 piece. We revealed our "water" pieces yesterday. You must go check out the other eleven. You have to scroll down to all the June 1 entries. Go visit Joanne's blog too... she is creating along with us.

My piece took several unexpected turns. The process was a bit disconnected and I think there are several ideas here which come together in a somewhat cohesive quilt, but it would be interesting to explore them on their own.

I began by gathering fabrics and I made some sketches. I've been intrigued by book arts lately and I thought I'd incorporate that in some way.

 water clean

I created a simple accordion book with two layers of fused fabrics. I cut each page separately and stamped various words on the pages. I brainstormed things that you might do with water and I just kept stamping the words until I ran out of ideas. Then I zigzagged the pages together and pressed them into an accordion format.

water unbound 

I used sequin waste as a stencil and painted the circles onto the surface of the book (and the rest of the quilt).

Originally, I was thinking of creating an abstract landscape inspired by my parents home on Lake Ontario. I even asked my dad to collect some smooth stones from the shore and bring them when they visited last month. The book concept took me a little away from the landscape.

But as the piece was in progress on my design wall I began to see some of the landscape elements I had originally sketched. The lacy bit on the bottom is a bit like foamy waves on the shore.

water closeup

The striped fabric really makes me think of a sunset with just those few lines of orangy red mixed among all those watery cool colors.. The embroidered x's and the tiny seed beads at the top could be sky and stars. The arch could be a firmament.

That made me think of the familiar words from the creation story in the Book of Genesis.

God said, "Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters. And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so. And God called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day.

Then I wished I would have done a piece all based on that bit of scripture. (Maybe I'll do that for the Quiltart Journal project. Participants are required to make a quilt based on one or more of the elements: earth, air, water, fire.)

I like the composition of the quilt. I've made several other quilts with that altar/shrine format. I also really like the variety of textures, fabrics and surface design. I think the book is cool, though I'm not completely sure it fits.

I have been completely humbled and thrilled with the comments about my piece on the 12x12 blog. This is really an amazing group of artists who have been so inspiring and supportive.

Our next theme is "illumination." Wow.


momma helen said...

How funny. I looked at your quilt and thought "What does a robot have to do with water, and why did she name it firmament?!" I did love how the robot was stary-eyed, though. That was genius. ;)

Now, taking off my 4-year old boy glasses, I can see the water quilt.
Sort of like those pictures which are of a young woman when you look one way, and a crone when you look another.

It's a great piece, no matter how you look at it!

Sharon said...

Love your 12 x 12 quilt! As a quilter AND a stamper, I really like the small book incorporated into the quilt. Thanks for the discussion of how you made this, and what your thoughts were. I'm hoping to start trying art quilts soon, and this is invaluable information for me! Thank you for sharing with the blog world!

mathea said...

I really like this quilt and the way you have attached the accordion book, creating two quilts in one. It is so different with the book closed and buttoned up, and when unfolded I see it as water bursting out of a dam, creating a beautiful waterfall.