weaving madness & monsoon weather

The heat has hammered us (we have had temps of around 112 for the last few weeks), but monsoons started unofficially over the weekend (with thunderstorms) & were officially declared as upon us this week after we had three consecutive days with a dew point over 54. This usually means cooler temps, below 110, & rain! We have had quite a bit of plant & animal activity in anticipation of this long awaited event, including the discovery that we have 2 bobcat families sharing our property (1 mama has two kittens, the other has one).

I have just completed my latest work & have submitted it to Tohono Chul park's museum for consideration to be included in the upcoming exhibit Día de los Muertos: The Gift of Remembrance. This Mexican holiday, Day of the Dead, is celebrated on November 1st; its purpose is to remember and honor ancestors & deceased relatives. Many festivities surround the day-- cemeteries are visited & grave sites are tidied up; special foods are cooked & left out for the ancestors; shrines are created with mementos, candles, religious artifacts, flowers, and family pictures.

For this exhibit, I chose to create a mixed fiber media piece, using a tapestry as its base. It is a shrine commemorating Georgia O'Keeffe. Having just finished reading a second biography about her life when I heard about the exhibit, I immediately knew I wanted to design and create this work. Like many people & artists, I admire & am inspired by O'Keeffe, but more so by who she was as a woman and how she embraced her creativity than by her artwork. There are many things about her personality and some aspects of her life that really resonate with me (we even had the same address number). Her accomplishments as a woman during the time period that she lived her life are remarkable.

recuerdos de georgia
10" x 13"
techniques: tapestry, appliqué, paper folding
materials: natural & synthetic dyed wools, linen, bamboo, photographic image on cotton twill, silk paper

Now that recuerdos has been completed & submitted (I should hear next week if it is accepted), I can get back to the job of moving into the new studio space. We have sealed the floor, painted, finished the window's wood trim, & laid tile. I had to stop at that point to weave or I would have become too distracted with moving & cleaning. Along with the move will come a major house cleaning to resurrect our home from the pit it has become during construction back to its former glory as cozy abode (yes, I neglected household chores to weave... it's a rare disease known as fiber fever).
And, like Kathy Spoering, I also had to prepare & ship my agave tapestry to Durango for inclusion in the Intermountain Weavers Conference Fiber Celebrated 2007 exhibit being held at Durango Arts Center in Durango, Colorado.

So, until I can take some photos of the newly inhabited studio (complete with looms!), I will be enjoying both the nesting process and the monsoon storms. Our desert lies in anticipation of that long awaited cool drink.... bring it on!

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