Sunday, November 16, 2008

in the studio

{An update on creative activities}

I love those little brackets.
So my weekend has included lots of time not spent doing laundry or scrubbing the bathroom floor (though I sweep a lot, because I like to sweep and because frequent sweeping keeps the crud from sticking to the soles of your bare feet in the morning.) Instead, I've used all my hoarded moments of relatively guilt-free pleasure on two projects: the first of hopefully three small art quilts I'll sew up before the end of the month; and an altered book that I'll take to my first-ever Altered Book Round Robin at the Minnesota Center for Book Arts tomorrow night.
(This is a Roz project, this Round Robin; learn more here.)

The quilt is as I said first of hopefully three parts, an Advent project that explores the Year B texts from Isaiah (my favorite book of the Bible) and a progression from Darkness to Light. This is the Darkness quilt, and its central image is a painful one - a starving infant in West Darfur. The backdrop is chaos, crazy-quilt-like, and the texts incorporated into the quilt are from Isaiah 64:1, and also the non-seasonal Isaiah 5:20,21,23. Plus a verse from something we recently read at church that I haven't yet sourced, "Keep listening, but do not comprehend; keep looking, but do not understand." The terrible condemnation of being damned to a destiny of our own ignorance and violence. It's depressing, but that's offset by the work of it.

The book to be altered by this group of artists I'll meet tomorrow is a copy of The Ephemerides for 1940 to 1950. One of those odd old books my mother bestows upon me from time to time, full of outdated information but well-bound; a book crying out to be played with and painted on. I don't feel like posting any photos tonight (I'd have to use my phone for the quilt) but will do so soon.

I'm glad I planned this weekend's creative time into my agenda, though my husband probably feels I've been a little lazy around the house. Fortunately H. likes to help me sew, and I can be creative and give him attention at the same time. He also likes to play on my laptop, which is in the sewing room, so we are at least near one another enough to make me feel I'm not totally self-centered and self-indulgant.

And all this means that the studio/sewing room/dressing room that contains darned near all of my worldy goods (notwithstanding books, art and furniture), which I just cleaned up last week, is now adrift in rubber stamps and inkpads, scraps of fabric, various printouts of Bible verses and instructional texts, and all the usual accumulations besides -- utility bills, dirty socks, etc. I'm not actually a pig; I'm a decent housekeeper. But this room isn't for company anyway.

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