Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Pairings - A Solo Exhibit

Here is the site of my first solo show - STCU (Spokane Teachers Credit Union) Branch in Ponderay (just a hop, skip and a jump from downtown Sandpoint). It is one of POAC's ancillary galleries and I've been waiting my chance to exhibit in one of them. This is not your typical bank branch - no counter with tellers standing at the ready. Instead, it is a small space with 4 cubicles where employees sit at their desks and help customers who sit comfortably across from them. The gallery space is in these cubicles, one or two walls available in each. I found it an excellent venue for my so-called body of work which veers off in multiple directions. Each cubicle sort of has a theme.

As customers enter, this is the first wall they see. These pictures were taken before all the signage was up, so there will be a big sign here with my name. I chose to hang "January" there because this space is so close to the front windows and fade-producing light. "January" has a painted background that is more impervious to light damage. I also have some padfolios in a rack hanging from the wall.

From the desk in that space, or as customers are leaving, one can see this little space next to the front windows. I've hung two of my "Strawberry Moon" pieces as well as "Harvest Moon."

Next cubicle in showcases my more abstract work. Here is "Jockeying for Space", "Jockeying in the Queue" and "Guys Ties - My Hand-dyes."

And on the longer wall is "Spring Runoff - Little Rogue," "Dance," "Jungle" and "Balance Check."

The last cubicle is really bright, with the short wall blinding you with "Azalea Mosaic V: Slippery Slope" and "Azalea Mosaic II: Garden Path."

The adjacent wall is all about blues and landscapes. I've never had these three quilts next to each other before (not even at home) and I was quite stunned with how beautiful they look together: "Emily Carr Skies," "Willow" & "Far From the Midwest Prairie." They span the 5 years I've been back in Idaho, years separating their creation. I guess this is what they mean about doing the work and developing a style or voice.

Across from this row of cubicles is a glassed in and larger office space with one longer wall for art. It was the last wall we hung, we were tired, there was a very big desk blocking easy access to the wall and let's just say, I wasn't totally happy with the way we arranged the four pieces there. But I was too tired to fight it. Couldn't get a decent picture of the whole wall, so here are the two which were hung on the left: "Falling Leaves" which is a new piece, and "Idaho Maple." Both feature my leaf stamped and thread painted charms.

And here are my other new pieces which are grouped on the right over that desk: "Palouse Hills: Hint of Spring" and "Palouse Hills: Ready for Winter."

When thinking about how I would put together this exhibit, I hit upon the idea of choosing pairs of art quilts that were related to each other not necessarily because I meant them to be, but because the scraps or leftover fabric from one sparked an idea for the next. "Balance Check" and "Jungle" are related by virtue of the quilting design, the sample to test the motif becoming a little work of art in itself. In some cases, it's the repeat of the theme of lake and trees. Below is my artist statement:

Pairings: One Thing Leads To Another

Most of my inspiration comes directly from nature, creeping in subtly through the colors I use, more boldly in images of trees, leaves, lakes and mountains, and sometimes only as expression of line, shape, contrast and texture. Sometimes an idea springs from the random juxtaposition of fabric on my work table. More often than not, leftovers from one project become design inspiration for the next. This is the legacy of my traditional quilting background. For this exhibit, I’ve chosen mostly works that are linked by that concept of leftovers leading to the next idea. Can you see the bits of one quilt in another?

These art quilts include cloth dyed and patterned commercially or by my own hand, highlighted and textured with quilting stitches, often embellished with beading and decorative threads. Sometimes I see images in the manipulated fabric and tease them out with stitch for others to see. And sometimes I find myself returning to the other legacy of my traditional quilting roots - geometric patterns and the rich dark colors of the antique quilts I love. Underlying each step is the excitement of discovery as ideas emerge from my materials and surroundings, finding expression within the basic framework of the quilt.
Pairings: One Thing Leads To Another runs through June 15 at STCU, 477181 North Highway 95, Ponderay, ID. Hope some of you can stop by and take a look.


June said...

This is wonderful, Sheila. Congratulations on putting together so much fine work.

Michele Matucheski said...

Congratulations on your first Solo Show, Sheila! That's big step!

Sherrie Spangler said...

Wow! Great job! I wish I could see it in person.

The Idaho Beauty said...

Thanks so much everyone!