A group of internet artists from all over the place who have decided to give each other a challenge every few weeks, on a theme chosen by each in turn. We have different ideas and styles, but share a love of textiles, and want to have some fun.

Monday, 27 February 2012

I will lift up mine eyes

Well, here is my first offering to the group: "I will lift up mine eyes".  Thread sketching on silk.  A3 size.
I am not really religious, but as soon as I learnt that I would be able to participate in this theme of Architexture,  I immediately started thinking about soaring and elegant cathedral ceilings.  Perhaps I was sub-consciously influenced by Alain de Botton's concurrent visit to Australia to promote his most recent book. Over the past week, I have also had a work trip to Adelaide, known as Australia's City of Churches.  Perhaps it is because of the start of Lent, I am not sure, but I knew this is what I wanted to represent.
I had hoped to be able to take some photos in Adelaide, but sadly that wasn't to be, so the quilt is based on a photograph by Jan van der Crabben, accessed through Wikipedia, and covered by the "Creative Commons Attribution - Share Alike 2.0 Generic Licence" which allows the sharing or adaptation of images with attribution.  (The resulting work, such as this quilt, are then covered by the same licence)

The quilt was constructed with a base of white homespun and cotton batting, covered with layers of white, cream and pastel strips of different weights and textures of 100% silk, from the stash for eco-dying.  You can see this in the following photograph of the completed quilt, taken on top of the lightbox.
I really started this quilt without knowing how I would finish it.  I like the raw and uneven edges, but it did need something to give it a "full stop".  I discovered a scrap of the gold embroidered sari border, which seemed perfect but too small.  I actually went to our local fabric and trims shop to look for something similar, but when the shop assistant asked if I needed any help, the look on her face when I tried to explain I wanted something "ecclesiastical" made it all too clear I would have to modify and make do.
I mitered the 2 small strips I had, then ran off lines of gold thread the extend to the top and left borders - in keeping with the frayed edges throughout the quilt.  I actually think this is better than if I had been able to find enough trim to frame the whole image.
I finished the opposite corner a lace truncated cross - again discovered amid the stash of silks.
The rose window was no in the original photo, and I tried to emphasis its focal point by cutting some gold silk to roughly fit the shape - like looking at a glorious dawn or sunset through the window.
Wonderful and thought-provoking theme.  I am looking forward to the next one!


Jenny said...

I think that this is truly wonderful & done in such a short time too! It accords with everything I like in textile art. It would have been brilliant to see it in reality but, sadly, you are in Oz! If this is representative of your country's art it is a credit to it.
Do I detect some tatting on the piece or is it other lace?

Coincidentally, my offering will be the interior of a cathedral as well. In my case it is based on Durham which is my favourite by a mile.

Once more, well done! It is now a case of 'follow that' as you decide what to do next.

Julie said...

This piece is really impressive and I love that it has raw edges. The gold top left corner is just right and provides a 'stop' for the eye as you say. I had the same thought about finishing with my earlier stained glass window piece but wasn't brave enough to leave the edge raw. I look forward to seeing your next challenge piece and welcome again!

Kathryn said...

Thanks Julie and Jenny for your kind comments. Jenny, you are right, that is tatting in the bottom right hand corner (I wrongly referred to it as lace). I found it among my collection of fabric scraps for eco-dying, so it is not something I made myself. But I have made use of it!

Angela said...

This is just beautiful Kathryn and very unusual...I love how you've left the raw edges!

quilthexle said...

What a great piece of art !! I love your raw edges ... I still need to find the courage to just do that ;-))

Sue said...

It is fabulously uplifting and a very sympathetic mixture of materials, using many of my favourite cloths and trims. You are obviously a fast worker! It's also a peaceful image - really lovely.