Thursday, April 29, 2010

For my sister on a tragic annivesary.

It's been 3 years as of today, and I'm sure the pain of her 19 year old daughters death is as fresh as it was then. I only hope that the joy she has in raising her grandson, son of her dead daughter, helps her live on.
I've heard it said that an object one makes with their own hands absorbs and retains the thoughts and feelings of the maker for all eternity. I look now at the ceramic jar, with lid, that I made so long ago and try to remember when I made it. Was it after the funeral of my mother? I think so. What was I thinking when I made it? Did I think of my mother, the funeral, the get together afterwards with family and the inherent weirdness that comes from such events?I know for sure that I made this vessel before my grandmother died, and before my oldest sisters boy drowned in the river. I could not attend either of these funerals. The jar however was in my younger sisters house through both of these occasions. Can anon-sentient object continue to absorb the psychic energy that flows daily from the sentient beings around it?I made the jar on a pottery wheel, the process of which creates a round vessel. While it was still wet I took boards and pushed in the sides to make it somewhat square. In creating something do we try to force a thing in to a shape that reflects our need to change our own lives? What emotional pressure did I exert while exerting the physical pressures required to push the inherent roundness of this vessel into a squarer shape? Did I secretly, or perhaps not so secretly, try to gain some control over the life that was going on around me? Is artistic endeavor a way of dealing with what Life has or has not given me? Now, I watch as the vessel I made is lowered into the ground by nephew and niece, my younger sisters children, two young adults having their last physical contact with their sister.A vessel is made to contain things, ashes or memories, secrets that it now takes with it to the grave.

Monday, April 5, 2010

What? You're surprised it's still about rugs?

Sewing up measured sequences of rag strips for a symetrically planned rug

Winding them on to shuttles and placing them in order, left to right.

Thinking about what to do next. So many choices.

Maybe one in purples, or maybe one using primary red, blue,yellow, etc as in this former Mickey Mouse curtain?

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Okay, one more time

I have restrung the loom. Unfortunately I have two separate "original" booklets on how it should be done. One instructed me to wind on 20 threads per section to weave at 8 ends per inch. This didn't make sense, but I did it. It looked wrong when I got to the point of beginning to weave so I double checked, looking at both booklets. The second booklet said wind on 16 threads per 2 inch section, this made a lot more sense, but I already had 30 yards of warp wound on at 20 per section for 12 sections. I decided to go with the the 10 threads per inch and wound on 2 more sections to reach my desired 28 inch width. I didn't manage to thread the warp tensioning box exactly the same though, and the 2 new, outside sections are a little looser than the 12 others. Not Good! But I'm limping along until I've used up this warp.
One rug is finished, 26 by 60 inches, yeah, the 28 inch desired width narrowed down to 26, that's a technicality that I still need some practice on.
It's kind of a somber rug though, color wise, so my next one is something a little brighter.

I also added an overhead shuttle rack to the loom. The original would have been more solid, but I'm working on a budget here and used what I had in the shop, plus $3.