Friday, July 31, 2009

Get Inspired

I just got back from a one day trip up to DC. It was great to have a day to get to a few museums to check out what was new. My visit was quick and focused - get to see as much art as I had energy to absorb.

Even though I was told that this summer in DC wasn't as hot as it usually is in July - it was pretty hot and humid. I got tired of walking and jumped into more than one cab. I started in the Textile Museum, on S Street - a small but great museum - they told me that the museum collection was dedicated to tapestries and rugs.

That said, the two exhibitions were on twentieth century Amish quilts
on loan from the International Quilt Study Center and Museum at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. What a great collection they must have there. These quilts were truly amazing - the use of color and repetition is vibrant, holding attention with an active peacefulness.

The second exhibition presented the Museum's new acquisitions.
There were about 20 pieces including a wonderful Indian turban with pleats, folds and twisted cordwork - that was so intricate that it was clear why it was sewn to a felt base - it would have taken all morning to re-wrap it. A wonderful large contemporary batik from Java, the tjanting work is so intricate it is amazing.

Of course, I am always in love with textiles from China and there were two great examples, a wonderful silk woman's robe, and a "rain" coat. The rain coat was made of woven layers of grasses and pounded palm
stitched together at the edges and had some wonderful "fringe" on the hem - from the loose fibers.

The Textile Museum is a quick stop near DuPont Circle - and worth the trip.

I also got to the Renwick Gallery on Pennsylvania, very near the White House, and finally ended up in the East Building of the National Gallery - to check out the work "since 1950". Then a train up to Baltimore and back home. An exhausting and inspiring day. -janet

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Planning for IQA in Houston this October?

The schedule for the International Quilt Festival has been out for a few weeks and the classes look like the best yet. I will be teaching in the Mixed Media Classes, which have expanded and will be doing two different demos during the Mixed Media Miscellany sessions.

This year, I will be offering some new classes; here is my line-up:

#140 Needlefelted Images (Monday evening)

Learn the basics of needlefelting. Make a great landscape or abstract image using needlefelting techniques on various foundations, recycled and new fibers and yarns.

#316 Stencils Made Simple (All day Wednesday)

Learn a new appreciation for using stencils, contemporary tools and materials, with attention to special techniques for textile work using dyes, paints, and sticks as well as simple registration methods and proper storage. Create a collection of durable stencils using your own images, including simple and complicated "bridges."

#508 Japanese and Specialty Paper Primer (All day Friday)

Gain confidence working with fancy and hand-made papers. Learn techniques for manipulating, staining, dying, cutting, leafing, and sewing Japanese "rice," lace, and specialty papers.

#468 Mixed-Media Miscellany #1 (Thursday afternoon)

See what this exciting event is all about. Twenty teachers at separate tables around the room offer continuous demonstrations of particular techniques and methods that can take your quiltmaking and/or crafting a step further. Enrollees receive a booklet of one-page handouts from each teacher and circulate around the room, informally getting lots of new inspiration.

My table: Japanese and Specialty Paper Collage

#749 Mixed-Media Miscellany #2 (Saturday morning)

See description for Mixed-Media Miscellany #1

My table: Screen Printing with Removable Stencils

I hope to see some of you there! Watch this space for updates.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Printing and Pluto!

Well, I am back from QSDS and in the studio. Before I left I had printed up some shirts I am hoping to get some of them up on to in the next week or so.

If you have ever been in my studio, you will know about the studio cat, Pluto. He is a great hunter and too friendly! He loves to be in the middle of what ever is happening - and is constantly and unceremoniously being tossed off the print tables onto the floor.

Lili, my studio assistant and indispensable right hand this summer was gracious enough to take some photos of the last day of studio alignment with Pluto - so enjoy!

In my next life..... Have a great summer!