Saturday, 7 April 2018

blind artist


It’s been a few months since I blogged. Regular readers will know that doesn’t mean nothing much has been happening…..quite the opposite. Long spells of not blogging indicate I’m in a manic creative space and can’t spare a moment.

Over the 2 decades of my serious art making it’s easy to identify various phases I’ve moved through. The most obvious ones being cloth dolls, 2-dimensional canvas embroidery, art to wear. Sometimes within those big phases were brief side tracks - a few weeks/a couple of months investigating something a bit off the main highway and eventually I’d cycle back.

Columbine, 2003

One of my regular diversions has been mixed media adornment. Favoured media being cloth, fibres and glass beads. I think I’ve mentioned before my preference for the description adornment. Jewellery (or “jewelry” for the USAers) is just so wrong and stupid. I don’t use precious stones and metals (though I’ve been there with Precious Metal Clay. Was Australias first certified teacher in 1998), perhaps some semi precious stones on occasion. So I’ll adamantly stick to using the term adornment.

"Ava" 2013, mixed media and embroidery on canvas, 50cm x 1200cm

The new phase started in November last year and I expected it would eventually peter out and I’d return to clothing and publishing PDF patterns. By the end of February this year I realised I wasn’t going back to art to wear or publishing patterns any time in the foreseeable future. I have cycled into a new phase of art making…..


mixed media necklace by Pearl red Moon, 2017

detail of jacket by Pearl Red Moon, sashiko stitching, machine stitching, applique, work in progress 2017

I have made so much stuff in the last 4 months! My little studio shop is absolutely exploding with stuff. In the Etsy shop I have always sold way more patterns than adornments – 95% more – so I can’t be bothered to list any of the newly made adornments.

mixed media necklace, Pearl Red Moon 2018

I’ve been longing to investigate some very experimental interpretations but have had to keep compromising with what I make because the out of the box stuff just won’t sell very readily in the studio. To justify allowing myself to go there I made a proposal to the art gallery at Muswellbrook, an hours drive from where I live and where I had a shared exhibition with my husband in 2013. I’m delighted that they were happy to offer me one of the exhibition spaces for next year. Working title for the show is “Finery” and dates will be May 11 to June 26.


bead weaving necklace, Pearl Red Moon, 2018

That was the good news. After my conference with the gallery directors I floated off on my bit of cloud 9 to an appointment down the road with the optometrist. My eyesight has been driving me batshit crazy lately. When beading I often have thread the needle 10-20 times a day. This was taking several minutes and I noticed my depth perception was terrible, often missing the needle eye by centimeters. I wasn’t overly concerned though as I hadn’t updated my prescription for 3 years.

pendant, embroidery and beading, Pearl Red Moon, 2018

The consultation revealed I have a cataract developing in my left eye. It’s a relief to know as this can be corrected with surgery and hopefully before the end of this year. I comfort myself that Monet famously developed cataracts towards the end of his life and this changed his colour perception and made much of his work all the more intriguing!

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If you are interested in buying an artwork or booking a commission, please email me at pearl@upstairs-art.com.au