Opening photo, unwinding a bit, stunning package in the post …..

Unfortunately the photos I took of my work on Friday evening as the Blueprint opening got underway are not good quality. 

Blueprint Exhibition for Eigse

I thought you might like to see a shot of my set up however and when I am in Carlow during the week invigilating I am going to bring my bigger camera and try to take some better more detailed shots.  The two larger wall hangings and a small framed piece are hung on the wall to the right and overall I was happy enough with how the felt looked on the night.  I don’t think from this photo that you can get any idea what the inside of the grey pod (on the plinth) is like but I felted some ovals of black sequined fabric into the light grey inside and these pick up the colours in the large grey wall hanging and the small grey textured piece on the front of the other plinth.  Thanks to my friends who made the effort to attend the opening, it was much appreciated!

Today I am unwinding a bit, answering a few emails, uploading a few images to Flickr, hoping and waiting for a call from the American Embassy re. what exact visa I need to travel on this Fall and since the postman came (or woman as it was today) drooling over the most AMAZING package I received from Jayne as part of the Ravelry Colour Swap number 7.  Head on over to Flickr if you would like to see the full package and to Clasheen Uncut to see a close up of the most LUSCIOUS fibre and hand made button but for now be prepared to admire the amazing ‘Ishbel’ that Jayne dyed and knitted especially for me ! 

Ishbel - dyed and knitted for me by Jayne!

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Opening tonight, short American update at last and advance notice of special felt sale!

Just about to hop into the bath before heading to Carlow for the opening of both the Eigse Carlow Arts Festival and more specifically to finish hanging (or draping!) my pieces for the Blueprint exhibition, one of the fringe events.  I did bring most of my felt in on Wednesday but took it home in the evening (didn’t want the undyed pieces to get filthy until all the tidying up was finished) and also the plinths that friend and sculptor Eileen McDonagh was kind enough to lend me for the show.  Once I saw the space I had been allocated it became obvious that I would only be able to hang two wall hangings and not three as planned but instead I have been allowed to drape one on the ground (this particular piece is actually a rug anyway!) beside my plinths and I actually think that this livens up the space nicely and provides a splash of colour in the centre of the room.  My worry about this had been that some of the members of Blueprint might consider it craft (as obviously it is, the criteria for this group is non functional items) but anyway all’s well that ends well and the rug stays on the ground!  I gave both plinths a fresh lick of white emulsion and overall was happy enough with the lay out of my space, will take photos today hopefully and let you all be the final judges!!  Because this is a non-curated event participants are free to show what they want within the confines of their own area.   The art work on display is therefore both interesting and varied.  Although not everything is to my taste it will never be at any exhibition, this is part of the excitement and I do feel that the group will have a positive response from the public when we open tonight at 6pm!

A VERY short American update, everything will be sorted next week I hope ……. Michigan dates 9th, 10th and 11th October, Loomis probably 25th, 26th and 27th September and San Fransisco and Berkeley between 29th September and 7th October!!!  I can’t wait!!!!!!!!!

Next week I am going to put up quite a few items in my new online shop and have a very special sale.   I will be donating a large percentage of every purchase to a really good cause so please tell your friends as soon as I have all the info announced!

Exhausted, elated, frustrated …….

Exhausted ….. wrists tired, brain worn out, plinths to paint and work to finish for the Blueprint exhibition in Eigse.

Elated ….. felt delivered for the South East Textile exhibition which opens on Friday 11th June between 6 and 8pm in the Watergarden, Thomastown, Co. Kilkenny, all welcome!  The show continues for two weeks and features a mixture of textile disciplines and styles showcasing the work of both experienced and new members of this exciting group; been called for an interview to a panel I am very interested in; adult and child felting workshop confirmed as part of the Cashel Arts Fest in November.

Frustrated ….. spent approx 4 hours yesterday trying to finish my final piece for Eigse but in order to get the finished dimensions I wanted fulled it so firmly that the really complex series of resists inside became one with the felt, eventually just cut it up into tiny pieces in frustration!

Lastly ….. don’t expect any sense from me for a couple of days until my work is delivered and installed.  Next week I am taking some time to relax without deadlines and will be in touch with everyone re work, emails, swap buddies, potential American workshop hosts, in short all of you waiting for a little slice of my time!

Two upcoming exhibitions and experimenting with resists to get surface design and texture

As I have already mentioned I seem to be so snowed under that I can’t think straight, must be why I had a different date in mind to deliver work for two upcoming exhibitions!  I was pretty horrified to discover I need work delivered to Carlow next Tuesday as part of the Blueprint show but slightly more relieved when I found out that work for the South East Textile Group show (info to follow next post) may also be delivered on Tuesday, three days later than I had originally thought.  Firstly some info re the Blueprint show and then some images of a sample piece using resists within the felt which when cut out and removed create design and texture on the surface.

PRESS RELEASE…’The Blueprint’ Presents…PRESS RELEASE

 
The Blueprint Artists Network presents an exhibition of artworks by artists from the South-East from 12th – 20th June 2010 in Castle Gate, Kennedy St, Carlow. 
 
Opening reception starts 6pm Friday 11th June 2010
 
This show promises to be one of the must-see events of the Eigse Fringe 2010, featuring over 60 paintings, drawings, prints, photographs and mixed media works by established and emerging artists from Carlow, Wexford, Kilkenny and Wicklow.
 
The venue on Kennedy Street has quickly established itself as an integral part of the Eigse route.  First opened during Eigse ’08 with an exhibition featuring just three visual artists, last year saw the venue expand dramatically and this year 14 artists will transform the space with a colourful display to suit all tastes.  Nicola Brown, a textile artist from Borris, Co. Carlow, will display her colourful wall hangings and fantastic felt pots; Anthony Walsh is an animator from Carlow whose work features on the Eigse website this year and Saidhbhin Gibson will be exhibiting her subtle mixed media work which incorporates natural and found objects.  Also on display will be photography, painting, drawing, print and mixed media work by Stephen Mynhart, Mary Cullen, Rachel O’Hara, Brandon McLane, Mairead Holohan, Shane Gannon, Paul Heary, Jackie Edwards, Deirdre Burke and Brian Bastick.
 
All exhibitors are part of the Artlinks network www.artlinks.ie and information on each artist and on The Blueprint can be found in the Artlinks online directory.
Open daily from 12th June 2010 – 20th June.
Castle Gate, Kennedy Street, Carlow.
 
For further information, email Mary Cullen at  mary.create@gmail.com or Brandon McLane at mclaneart@gmail.com

Now for those pictures …….

Playing with resists

The finished sample

Felt vessels, simple but stylish corsage, Eigse and Blueprint exhibition

Wow, I had hoped that things would calm down a bit this week but what with getting election posters down, making work for Blueprint and preparing for my ‘Craft in the Classroom’ presentation on Saturday it has been action on all fronts.  I actually decamped to Carmen’s studio on Tuesday and Wednesday rather than working here at home and this turned out to be a pretty good decision.  Because I limited myself  primarily to bringing undyed fibres with me I was able to concentrate on the vessels that I wanted to make and there were no outside distractions calling claim on my time.  Carmen cooked some wonderful food both days so really all I had to do was enjoy the creative process and get stuck into my felting.  Things worked out really well and by Wednesday afternoon I had finished 5 vessels before attempting a simple felt corsage as described in Lizzie Houghton’s new book ‘Felting Fashion’.  These were a joy to make and would make a gorgeous present for a favourite friend!  Unfortunately my camera’s battery ran out this evening just as I was in the middle of setting up the photo shoot but check out my next blog post for images of the flowers and written instructions on how you too can make them.

My main task today was going with Martin and setting up our work for Blueprint, a joint exhibition that we are participating in as part of the fringe section at Eigse, Carlow town’s large annual art festival.  If you are interested in seeing the show the address is Unit 2, Castle Gate, Kennedy St. Carlow and we will be open from 13.00 – 19.00 every day from June 13th – June 21st and longer at the weekends.  Although we didn’t need to have our work in place until tomorrow evening I wanted to be sure and get organised today as tomorrow I will be preparing my presentation for Saturday and need all the time I can get to get it finished!  It was really a case of being in the right place at the right time since good friend Eileen MacDonagh was just finalising the lay out of her major show in St. Patrick’s College and had a long thin plinth going begging which was absolutely perfect for my vessels!  If you can visit Eigse at all I urge you to do so, you MUST visit the college to see Eileen’s work.  She has many pieces of her beautiful Icosahedrons Series on display and other abstract geometric sculpture which has just arrived back in Ireland from her recent show in Paris.  Not since Sophie Ryder’s show several years ago has work so perfectly filled the exhibition space, both inside and outside.  Anyway, that tip is my tip of the year, I promise you will not be disapointed if you make the effort to attend!

Another delivery inspires!

My second delivery from Wollknoll arrived yesterday and I could hardly wait to get stuck in to the box.  Not having much free time to mess about I just ripped it open and decided to create a new piece immediately!!  The colours of a gorgeous merino dictated what I made, an organic looking pod/nest with a window of silk chiffon.  I am going to the Eigse Art Festival in Carlow tomorrow morning and when I return home intend spending the rest of the day felting.  Carmen will be over later in the afternoon to collect the wool that she had ordered (came with mine) and I hope to have made another pod and worked on a mixed media piece that I have been plotting and planning about.