Friday, January 13, 2017

January 28-April 15, 2017, Quilted Expressions, Blanden Memorial Art Museum, Fort Dodge, Iowa

My work is scheduled to be included in a group fiber exhibit, featuring Iowa artists, curated by Eric Anderson of the Blanden Art Museum in Fort Dodge, Iowa.  I will be premiering my self portrait Face of a Stranger (2016) as well as showing One Life (2013) and Humans Race (2012).

Opening Reception Saturday, January 28, 3-5pm with Artists Talk at 3:30pm.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

January-May 2017, Art Quilts of the Midwest; Iowa Quilt Museum, Winterset, Iowa

(photo: current exhibit at Iowa Quilt Museum as of June 2016)

A collection of quilts featured in Linzee Kull-McCray's book Art Quilts of the Midwest will be exhibited at Iowa's new and only museum dedicated exclusively to quilts, the Iowa Quilt Museum in Winterset - Iowa's quilt epicenter of sorts, thanks to Fons & Porter.  I'm pleased to be exhibiting there within it's inaugural year of opening.  Quilts and quilting are such a fundamental part of Iowa heritage.  My quilt Portmanteau will be on display as part of this exhibit.  It was one of two of my quilts featured in McCray's book and is currently in the collection of the Iowa State Historical Museum in Des Moines.

Opening reception to be held at the Iowa Quilt Museum on Saturday, January 28th.

Portmanteau (aka Revolution), 2011

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Means of Living

Continuing in the vein of my concentric square obsession, this is the hand-colored sketch for my next large-scale (~8x24ft) piece, "Means of Living." Features Robert Kaufman chambray indigo, Danish STOF yarn dye wovens, and rare vintage hand-dyed, hand-woven Tubu from my trip to Shanghai in 2012.  I am enjoying making the 33" concentric squares (1" finished strips) for "Dreamer" so much that I wondered what it would be like to just keep going.  Excited to get started on this piece.  I have at least one other large-scale concentric themed piece idea I'd like to pursue after this one.

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Dreamer (started late November 2016)

Currently working on another colossal scale quilt (~8.5 x 24 feet), working title Dreamer.  I've had the idea for some time.  I made a sketch while vacationing on San Juan Island in Washington state in early November 2016.

I started mostly with fabric from my existing collection, as well as several pieces given to me by felllow quilter, Dawn Eckrich, of Iowa City, Iowa.

This square was left over from Swim (2013).  The center piece (1x1") was not the right size for that piece. This orphaned square continued to inspire my fascination with concentric square work.



















Thursday, March 10, 2016

Water and Trees

North Star or satelite?
The earth roars as it moves.
Screens scream out their monetized mythologies,
Water and trees
Sing nature's fecund harmonies.
I dive in deep
And swim in the dew of my lover's eyes.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

April 9, 2016 - Cunningham Children's Home Benefit, Urbana, IL

I have been invited to be the guest speaker for this year's Festival of Quilts, a fundraising event for Cunningham Children's Home in Urbana, IL.  I will be presenting my 25 min video "A Piece of Me" followed by a question/answer period during which I will show three of my quilts.  Talks will be at 10:30A and 2:30P in the Administration Lounge.

Arial image of Cunningham Campus
Cunningham Children's Home, 1301 North Cunningham Avenue, Urbana, IL
Cunningham Children’s Home’s Festival of Quilts joins the Boneyard Arts Festival this spring as one of more than 90 galleries showcasing the arts in Central Illinois. This year Cunningham is excited to present a collection of show quilts that creatively blur the lines between conventional quilt making and fine art.

Monday, February 29, 2016

August 31-October 15, 2017, Rerum Novarum; Monte Pearson Gallery, Pearson Lakes Art Center, Lake Okoboji, Iowa

Pearson Lakes Art Center, Lake Okoboji, Iowa

I have the pleasure of working with the PLAC on my first solo show.  I'm planning to title the exhibit "Rerum Novarum" (meaning: of new things).  I am planning to debut Cross-Quarter Embrace (8'x24' colossal-scale quilt) along with about 10 other pieces.  More details to follow.

Friday, December 4, 2015

July 15-October 11, 2016, Art Quilts of the Midwest; National Quilt Museum, Paducah, Kentucky

As part of it's year-long focus on the role of place in quilt making, the National Quilt Museum in Paducah, Kentucky will host a collection of quilts from Linzee Kull McCray's book Art Quilts of the Midwest.  I plan to exhibit One Life, as neither of my quilts featured in the book (Venus Transit, Portmanteau) are available for exhibit at this time.

One Life, 2013

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Cross-Quarter Embrace

March 2014
I was recently thumbing through a book about weaving when I came across a design that really excited me as a potential quilt idea.  I wouldn't make the quilt in black and red, but this is just a simple way of remembering that basic concept so that I can later have the fun of choosing colors.  One thing I love about this design is that it holds together no matter how it is oriented.

July 11, 2015
I'm advancing the inspiration of this found design (weaving pattern) toward one of my latest creative goals: colossal quilts. I want to make large-scale (~8' x 25') work inspired by my fascination with the patina of industrial objects (boxcars that pass by my window each day, and the fishing boats recently encountered in Bayfield, WI)

July 20, 2015
Cross Quarter Embrace as imagined completed and on exhibit (projected size 8.5x24 feet):

December 2015

It's early December 2015 and Iowa City's had its first snowfall.  I've embarked on creating this colossal quilt, Cross Quarter Embrace, but have struggled to get it off the ground.  My typical use of a variety of tones and fabrics of similar color to create one overall color isn't working for a piece of this scale.  So, I am exploring new options.  As I start down this path, I am reminded of how inspiration comes from so many places - including Keith Haring's iconic Act Up imagery engaged to educate the public about the HIV/AIDS crisis during the mid-80's.  The AIDS crisis was concurrent with my own coming out process and permanently shaped me spiritually, sexually and artistically.  It's funny how experiences, some barely even memories, linger and seep into present-day experience and into that which I feel so deeply compelled to express.  It is through the expression and creation of quilt objects that I come to a deeper understanding of why I need to do so - through the recall of all that has shaped me and brought me to this present moment.

January 2016

My progress is slower than I would've liked or projected, but I am happy with the results so far.  Life has a way of intruding on studio time.  I'm having some structural problems with the piece being 100% square, but I am hoping that it will "quilt out" in the hand-quilting process.  I will quickly run out of room in my small studio/home to view the quilt in total as I make it.  This will present a  new creative challenge for me which I'm determined to find a way around, as it is critical to step back and view the piece in total to make sure it's working as a whole.  I plan to have the top completed by the end of April 2016 at the latest.

...and on Memorial Day, May 30, 2016, I picked up this project again.  I discovered a mathematical miscalculation in the first section I finished (red/turquoise) that will require me to "reverse sew" (seam rip) it to recycle and re-sew the fabric into the correct configuration.  In order to avoid total demoralization, I started fresh from the center and will work my way out from there.  My new finish date is by end of August 2016 at the latest.

As of September 2016, I had three distinct pieces completed on the road to the final piece.  As of January 2017, I have the mid-sized piece (~8x11 ft) back from the hand quilters, and the binding is on.  I am waiting for the first small (~4x5 ft) "sketch" and the final piece (~7x21 ft) to be hand quilted.  Here are a few more photos:
version 1

 version 2

 on my way to final version

final version (top only) complete, September 2016
stepping off possible quilting design with my hand-quilting broker in Shipshewana, Indiana