The mini-studio is set up, and the opening reception has passed, and now on to my finding and making.
For the opening I installed the photographic piece pictured. It is titled “Gathering Winooski” and is the kick-off for the project. To create it I took several photos from my collection of vintage studio portraits (cabinet cards) that were from Winooski photo studios, scanned them, printed them on lightweight watercolor paper, and enhanced them with machine stitch. They are pinned to the wall with straight pins, as befits their stitched incarnation. Each photo is sewn in a spontaneous way, as I try to let the photographic image guide me in its enhancement. At times the stitched (drawn) line reflects or repeats a motif somewhere in the photo, such as the stripes in the man’s tie, or the pleats in the little girl’s dress, and at other times the machine just winds its way around the image as it wishes.
The other photos here show my mini-studio space in the gallery in the eerie, early evening light. It is blessedly spare and furnished with all vintage items; metal typing table, metal chair, enamel bowls. I have a thing for the white enamel bowls, and have been collecting them for many years. As often as possible I store my supplies in them in my studio wherever I am. One of my favorite tasks in preparing a new space, is the ritual washing of the bowls. I love to sit in the grass or in my courtyard, and wash out the bowls, preparing them for a new season, a new location or a new series of work. For me this act connects me to the past, where many of my creative ingredients come from. Or perhaps it is a connection to my past as a laundress, seamstress, or milliner.