Friday, March 19, 2010

Bee and Crocus - true signs of spring

I almost missed these. They burst into bloom with the first, full, sunny day after days of cold rain. Bees were everywhere, celebrating the floral explosion. (The weather lured me outside out and I couldn't help but rake and search for new growth. These were one of the rewards.)

Sunday, March 14, 2010

"High Meadows" a double-walled basket for the Fuller Craft Museum

After almost a year of thinking about, sketching, and weaving mock-ups, I have finished the commission awarded me by the Fuller Craft Museum in Brockton, MA. The challenge was to create a basket over and beyond what I had done before, yet exemplify the best of what I am known for.
The decision was to weave a double-walled construction, using both tapestry and "hairy" techniques to create the design. There were many firsts to this piece. The most significant was that this basket was woven off center so that it would sit at an angle. Also new for this basket was the use of short "hairy" pieces in the inner basket. (Usually, I weave this technique on the entire outer surface of a basket, and not just in small areas.)
The idea for this basket was inspired by the the linear elements of cultivated fields off-set by the wild outcroppings I saw in a Google map. The current basket has taken the idea of nature's geography one step further, into stylized texture. The chartreuse "field" (in the inner basket) holds the promise of spring growth. I was thinking of wild mustangs, and reindeer left to roam free for the summer. (The Google map was of Montana where I'd read about mustang gatherings and I'd been thinking about walking with reindeer we saw in the mountains in Norway last summer.) Weaving this basket was a way to honor the animal spirit and natural beauty I love.
By clicking on this link, you will see twenty photographs documenting the basket's progression. I have written detailed captions for each photo explaining the steps. The basket is 12" tall on the high side, 8.5" on the short side and is 19" in diameter. The material is dyed rattan reed with encaustic medium. (and yes, marbles were added at the last minute for weight, interest and sound.)

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Photos of the finished basket coming soon!

Tonight, I wove together the inner and outer baskets for the Fuller commission. It's taken me a lot longer than I expected, but I'm really pleased. I still have some work to do before I add the encaustic medium to it, but I wanted to invite anyone reading this to come back (at the end of the week) to see photos of the finished basket.