TAFA: The Textile and Fiber Art List

Friday, April 23, 2010

Rayela Art and HeArt of Healing Gallery Welcome Quilters to Paducah!

Rachel Biel and Christi Bonds Garrett, AKA Rayela Art 
and HeArt of Healing Gallery, join hands and share 
in their love of cultural textiles.


The quilters are here!  The quilters are here!  The AQS event stirs Paducah into action, waking up the town after a wintry sleep.  Awaited with anticipation, the quilt show is our big yearly event, the core for those or us who love fabric and textiles in Quilt City USA.  I have had a booth at 212 Broadway in an antique store for three years now.  Ownership of the space changed and is now operated by Tanya and Randy, who have truly developed the space into a wonderful eclectic mix of antiques and local crafts.  Christi moved her inventory from her clinic/gallery in LowerTown to a large booth space across from mine making our combined space into a large ethnic delight of textiles from around the world. 

Rachel Biel in front of Afghan Tribal Arts' booth of beads.

Our friend, Abdul is also here,. renting a temporary space.  Stocked with beads, mostly semi-precious hand-carved stones from Afghanistan, his booth is a must visit for anyone who uses them in their work.  I like to incorporate beads and findings into my textiles and encourage other art quilters to think outside of the box in how stones can be incorporated into surface design.

Christi and I have many overlapping interests and then specialties that complement our product mix.  HeArt of Healings focus:  vintage kimono and molas.  Christi rattles off all the different names for the working, wedding, women's, men's and other kimono, how they should be worn and the techniques that were used in decorating the fabric.  There are hundreds of them!  Gorgeousness on racks!  Initially, her idea was to cut them up and sell them as fabric for quilters, but they are just too beautiful to randomly suffer attack under the scissors.  As her collection has grown, so has the quality, making them valuable pieces of wearable art.  She has often adapted her kimono to make them more functional for her lifestyle: if the sleeves and length are shortened, the remnants can be used in other projects.  And, the molas....  my, my!  What a stunning collection!

Christi Bonds Garrett modeling a kimono and 
straightening a rack from her booth.


Rayela Art focus:  My textiles are mostly from Central Asia, although I have started branching out and investing in small objects for the booth.  I was able to purchase some fair trade items that add a fun touch to my space: Bolivian instruments and dolls, palm visors and fans, and lots of Indonesian sarongs, always a big seller.

I get a big kick out of seeing all the action downtown during the quilt show.  Paducah becomes alive and we all benefit from both the financial contribution the quilters bring to our local economy as well as the relationships that are formed during this time.  I've met a couple of my cyber friends in person for the first time, transforming names and photos into real people, which was great fun.  And, there is just a wonderful exchange of stories and sharing that happens which is truly wonderful.

If you are in Paducah, please do stop by the Antique Galleria and visit us.  We are just a couple of blocks from the Quilt Museum, down by the flood wall.  If you are not here, then visit us online:

Rayela Art
HeArt of Healing Gallery
Afghan Tribal Arts


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Sunday, April 18, 2010

Paducah Fiber Artists: See us at the Quilt Show!

Ulla Shierhorn and Irene Reising at a Paducah Fiber Artists 
meeting held at Bryerpatch Studio.

We meet monthly, rotating around to studios and homes that can accommodate our group.  We bring great food, mingle around and catch up on what's been going on in our lives, then sit down for a "show and tell" of our latest projects.  Peppered with great story-telling, laughter, and sometimes sad events, these meetings and these people are a definite highlight for me and my life in Paducah, Kentucky.  Outwardly, we may not have all that much in common with each other.  We come from so many different backgrounds and focus on projects that vary greatly in technique and expertise.  But, inwardly, the Paducah Fiber Artists share a deep bond: we love all things fiber and have a deep curiosity about what our peers will come up with next on their list of endless fiber explorations.

Next week, Paducah rolls out its red carpets for the Quilt Show.  Most of the PFA members have work or special activities going on in different locations.  I asked our members to submit their news for those of you who are coming and have a list of where you can find us.  The first, must-see stop, is a brand new gallery that is a bit off the beaten track: Jefferson Street Studios, the gorgeous new home and work space of Bob and Helene Davis.  We had our April meeting in their new space and it exudes a wonderful sense of peace and harmony.


 Paducah Fiber Artists meeting at Jefferson Street Studios.


Both Bob and Helene are art quilters and Helene is especially known and recognized for her work as a dyer and surface designer.  Work representing the Paducah Fiber Artists is showcased in this first exhibit at their new gallery and Helene's hand dyed fabrics are also available for sale.  Do not be intimidated by the location!  It's only a short six or so blocks off the beaten track and truly worth the visit.  For more info: http://www.hand-dye.com/

LowerTown is Paducah's artist neighborhood, peppered with wonderful galleries, all of which will have special events during the Quilt Show.  We are especially grateful to Carol Gabany of "The Egg and I" for organizing an Art Walk which displays works by the Paducah Fiber Artists at various LowerTown galleries.  Go find us!

"Exuberance" by Susan Mogan at The Egg and I Gallery


  • Karen Hampton, "Orchid Splendor" and "Rhubarb" - Stornoway House Gallery 513 N. 6th  and "Relief" at Studio 7 on 6th -  314 N. 6TH
  • Linda Baxter Lasco, "Tree Skin Canyon" -  Bryerpatch Studio - 502 N. 5th
  • Deb Lyons, "Blue Quilt" -  Etcetera Coffeehouse -  320  N. 6th and "Shiva Dance"  - Reilly Ursury Studio - 527 N. 5th and "Invitation" -  Pinecone Studio -  421 N. 7th
  • Susan Mogan, "Exuberance" and "Jubilee", - The Egg & I - 335 N. 6th
  • Rachel Biel (yep!  That's me! A new dogfood purse...), "Doggy Soul" - Mentor House Gallery - 332 N. 6th
  • Lili Lui, 4 Monofilament, knitted necklaces -  The Egg & I - 335 N. 6th
  • Christi Bonds-Garrett, "Green Spirit II" - Studio 7 on 6th - 314 N. 6th and "Harmony Bone Hole" - Judeen's Art Studio - 720 Harrison St.  and "Spirit Ruins" - The Egg & I - 335 N. 6th
  • Pam Heavrin, "Shelly by the Sea" -  Pinecone Studio - 421 N. 7th
  • Robert Davis, "Reflections"  - Co Op Gallery corner of 5th and MLK
  • Helene Davis, "Flags II" and "Nexus"  - Reilly Ursury Studio, 527 N. 5th - and "Parameters", Bryerpatch Studio, 502 N. 5th
  • Karen Linduska, "Fantasy Garden #12" and "Fantasy Garden #20",  The Egg & I - 335 N. 6th St
  • Rosemary Claus-Gray, "Balance II" at Etcetera Coffeehouse - 320 N. 6th and "Folk Art Critter, Kevin" at Mentor House Gallery - 332 N. 6th


Here is an article on the walk: LowerTown Art Walk

Both Lily Liu and Helene Davis have work at the Yeiser Art Gallery's must-see exhibit "Fantastic Fibers".  Lily's piece at the left, "Make Every Minute Count" is a theme she brings up often at our meetings.  You can be sure that some of these rolled pieces were assembled during our show and tell times as she literally does keep her fingers busy at all times, either caring for her young ones or making a crazy new fiber invention. 


PFA member Sally Terry has a lot going on:

She will have “Nature’s Fireworks” hanging at Bob and Helene’s (Jefferson Street Studios). It is the cover quilt for “Pathways To Better Quilting”, Published by AQS. It is a wholecloth with Langa Lapu Fabric from South Africa. Machine quilted with over 40 different threads, including specialty threads. It has traveled in a National Wholecloth Exhibit.

Sally will be teaching a Running Threads Class and Quilt This-Machine Quilting How To Work  and Choose Patterns at AQS Show. 
She is also the author of the No. 1 Quilt Book “Hooked On Feathers” Published by AQS for 2009. The Quilt Channel will also feature Sally quilting the new Hooked On Feathers technique. She has a new book with a working title of “From Quilt Top To Quilted” to be published later this year.
 
Last, but surely not least, my hope is that every one of you will come and find me at my booth housed at Antique Galleria, 212 Broadway in downtown Paducah.  

 Charlotte Erwin leading 
a marbling workshop at Working Artist Studio.


Interested in learning how to marble fabric?  You can learn from our local guru, Charlotte Erwin:


Quilt Fabric Marbling Workshop
April 19, 2010 - April 24, 2010 Times: 10 AM-5 PM
Location:  Working Artist Studio, 303 N. 8th St.
Phone:  270.441.7844
Admission:  $65 person. $120 two people. Price includes 10 pieces of prepared fabric & supplies.
Hands-on one-hour fabric or paper marbling workshop with LowerTown artist Charlotte Erwin. Reservations suggested for two or more participants.


I sell cultural textiles from around the world and my booth will be loaded with great examples of these long time traditions.  My special focus is Central and South Asia, but I have some things from South America and Africa as well.  I will be depleting my Etsy store of its best pieces for the show, too, so if you like ethnic textiles, you will not be disappointed.  Dr. Christi Bonds Garrett of HeArt of Healing Gallery also moved her inventory to Antique Galleria and our booths face each other.  She also focuses on cultural textiles and has an incredible collection of molas, vintage Japanese kimono and other Asian textiles.  Between the two of us, you will be walking into paradise.
Clearly, there will be a lot to see and explore when you come to Paducah!   Bring good walking shoes and be prepared for sensory overload as you experience one great exhibit after another.  The dogwood trees are in full bloom, Spring is here in all its glory, and we welcome you with open arms!

For posts on this blog on past quilt shows, click here and click here for more stories on the Paducah Fiber Artists.


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Thursday, April 15, 2010

Introducing Oshiwa Printing Blocks at the Paducah Quilt Show!

Handcarved textile stamps from Oshiwa, 
a carving group in Namibia.


Anita Brandt, founder of Oshiwa Designs, joined our Fiber Focus Group awhile back and approached me about using Rayela Art as the distributor for the textile stamps her carving group produces.  After several months of emailing back and forth, trying to figure out the logistics of such a partnership, we are almost ready to hit the market!  Last week, two huge boxes arrived at my doorstep loaded with the stamps.  Our first introduction to the public will be here in Paducah during the quilt show which starts next week.  If you are coming to Paducah, please visit the Rayela Art booth at 212 Broadway, housed in Antique Galleria.  Broadway is Paducah's main street, a short walk from the Quilt Museum and other downtown businesses.

The Oshiwa Namibia Team

Anita's team consists of a small group of talented carvers.  Each brings special skills and talents to the mix.  We will have more stories about each one in the future.  The stamps are their main focus, but they also have a booth in Namibia with other products they make including gorgeous picture frames, pillows and other crafts.  Distribution from Namibia to a larger market has been a major problem for Anita, so we are hoping that by working with Rayela Art, this problem will be solved.  At this point, we will start only with the stamps and later move on to the other possible products.

Oshiwa carved photo frame.


Maria sewing Oshiwa cusion covers.


Oshiwa cushion cover using stamped fabric.

The stamps are available as individual pieces as seen in the first photos or as sets.  We are still working out the pricing details.  Anita has been operating on a string budget with no salary for herself for years and years.  Is this a sustainable approach?  We need to be able to find a price point where they can meet their needs and which is affordable for the artists who will be our primary market.  

Oshiwa textile stamps sold as sets.



As sets, the stamps have jigsaw patterns that can be used to compliment each other.  All of the photos in this post show their distinctive African geometric patterns, but many also depict animals, both real and imaginary.  Some include the elephants, rhinos and snakes of Africa, while others are just funny creatures that are inside the carver's imagination.  Here are a couple of creature graphics that were created with the stamps:


Oshiwa creature designs using their textile stamps.



Oshiwa recently joined TAFA: The Textile and Fiber Art List and we will move into creating a greater online presence for the group once the Quilt Show is over.  We have a lot of work carved out for us: setting up a shop on Etsy, getting a blog going for the group, a facebook fan page, and so on.  Meanwhile, we could really use your feedback!  
  • What is your reaction to the designs?  (Too ethnic?  Too African?  Or, just drop dead gorgeous?!!)
  • Would you pay $2 per square inch for a stamp?
  • What would you use the stamps for? (fabric, paper or clay?)
  • What themes would interest you?
  • Would you prefer to buy individual stamps or sets?
Any feedback that you can give us will be extremely helpful as we plan out our next steps.  Paula Benjaminson has used the Oshiwa stamps in her workshops with great success.  Visit her blog to see examples of how contemporary fiber artists have incorporated these designs into their work.  And, be sure to leave some nice words for the carvers, as well.  Anita will pass your words on to them and an encouraging pat on the back is always a nice gesture!

For more information, visit Oshiwa.com.

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Saturday, April 3, 2010

Art Quilt Exercises by Donna Hussain

Click on this link to see the book:


A year ago a group of my quilting friends formed an art quilt circle to study techniques that Jane Davila and Elin Waterston present in their book “Art Quilt Notebook.”  Each month we read one chapter, then made a 9x12 inch quilt using skills we learned from the chapter. In the fall of 2009 many of our exercise quilts were entered into the annual quilt show of River City Quilt Guild. The quilt photos in this article were taken at that show.
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One of our first projects was to sew a quilt with the design of a pear and its shadow. Most of us used the pear pattern and sewing instructions from the book.

by Vera Karnes



 by Janet Van Wert

The early chapters in the text emphasized basic principles of design, such as focal points, balance, movement, repetition, depth, prospective, proximity, proportion, space, variety, rhythm, and movement. We each experimented with these design principles when making our exercise quilts.

by Maureen Caputo



 
by Maureen Caputo


 by Joyce Reece


 by Beverly Beedie


Some of us chose a single theme for all of our exercise quilts. Kari’s was gourds. (We had a laugh over her quilt Gourd by a Bull.)

 by Kari Bauer



by Kari Bauer


 by Kari Bauer



 by Kari Bauer


After reading the chapter “Inspiration from Images,” many of our group members used photographs as inspiration for their quilt designs.  I scanned a family photo of a relative into my computer, then printed the photo on fabric to make my exercise quilt of a Muslim girl wearing a burka. Beverly used a family photo and a map of a backpack camping trip for her exercise quilt.


by Donna Hussain



 by Beverly Beedie

The chapter on painting and stamping techniques inspired Janet to dip a potato masher in bleach, and then stamp the masher on fabric. The resist pattern made by the masher looked like a Japanese pattern to her, so she added other oriental motifs to her quilt top.

by Janet Van Wert


The chapter on found objects suggested ways to add three dimensional items to our quilts, such as stones, sticks, buttons, shells, and earrings.


by Janet Van Wert
by Loraine Brown
Figure 16, Donna Hussain


The chapter Thread Work was instructive on thread painting bobbin drawing, couching, and free-motion quilting.  Formerly not my style, but after reading the chapter I relaxed and gave thread play a try.

 by Donna Hussain



Our group members also made exercise quilts using hand-dyed fabrics and fabrics that they painted.     

            by Loraine Brown

This year our art quilt circle has added many new innovative members.  We also have a new source book, “The Quilting Arts Book” by Patricia Bolton, spend part of our monthly meetings watching how-to quilting videos, and plan occasional workshops and play days to enhance our artistry and quilting-making skills.

How about you?  Are you part of a group that has used exercises like this to develop your art quilt skills?  I would love to hear how others explore their creative potential through a group process.




California quilter, Donna Hussain, has exhibited in major quilt shows around the country, authored books, and is a regular contributor to Fiber Focus. Click on her name to see all of her past articles.


The photo shows Donna with her husband, Pascha.

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