Wednesday, May 8, 2013

The New Work

the piece at the start of week 2

So what exactly am I doing here at the Nes Artist Residency? I'm embroidering! The first month I will be stitching a large piece to hang on the wall. Most of the pieces I have made in the past are jewelry-sized, maybe 3" long and 2" wide. Now I am trying to go as big as I can. I started my first day (May 1) and stitch about six or seven hours each day, but not in one sitting. I do 1-3 hours at a time and take breaks in between. I also walk every day not only to explore where I live, but also to look at things from a distance. I feel this is good balance for my eyes.

The piece will be all white. I have a number of different threads in white and shades of off-white in cotton, linen, and wool. Most are from the U.S. but I did find some additional wool thread here in Iceland. I am working intuitively, just stitching away, changing color and texture and shifting directions each time I finish one thread and add another. I am also using one stitch: the Colonial knot, my favorite kind of knot:

how to make a Colonial knot

So far I have worked nearly 60 hours. I am monitoring my progress each day so at the end of the month the piece will be done. Then in the second month I will be making stitched jewelry. My initial plan was to incorporate stitching with my metalwork, but now I plan to eliminate metal pretty much entirely and only make work with fabric and thread. I like this limitation and, in fact, don't see it as a hinderance at all. I am really excited about just focusing on textiles!

the piece at the end of day 1

More about the idea tomorrow...

I will post a photo every week to show you my progress. 

Thanks for reading.

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