Thursday, July 21, 2016
The other night I went to my grandma's house for dinner, actually to give my grandma the jacket I made for her that I just wrote about in the previous post (For Grandma) and my aunt and cousins are visiting and staying with my grandparents for the next month or so, but I hadn't seen much of them yet because I've been working a lot. My grandma always gets around to great topics when we talk for so long, and somehow we got around to the idea of what people carry in their bags. I'm not sure how it came up, but I started joking around about how people always make fun of me for the ridiculous stuff I have in my bag and decided to just have an impromptu performance art piece to show them that I was not exaggerating. I grabbed my bag and started pulling things out and through the lens of my aunt and grandma's reactions (mainly laughing), I realized just how ridiculous all the things I carry around are! And so, the other night, inspired by the ridiculousness, I went through my bag and photographed everything in it in an aesthetically pleasing (I think) fashion.
Wednesday, July 6, 2016
Tessellation and Toilles:
This class was all about screen printing repeat patterns. It was super complex and really challenging for me learning the techniques was so valuable to me and my future art career that it was worth all the hard work. I love classes that really push me to work hard and understand what I'm working for.
The first project was a tessellation--a shape that fits into itself in a repeat pattern. I was really proud of how this one turned out--so proud it's kind of what inspired me to get a cow skull tattoo! The final project in this class was to re-print something we'd printed before in a different color way or in some way differently, so I printed this one again in the brown color scheme seen on the far right.
One of the last project was to create a pattern with a color background, meaning you had to work out printing a color and leaving out the shapes you would later fill in with other colors. I took inspiration for a print I drew in my sketchbook of lots of my favorite foods and modified it to be less colors. I didn't love how the finished product came out but I really liked how it looked with only black white and red! You can see my registration is a bit off--it's so hard to register perfectly on a repeat pattern on fabric!
Gender, Sexuality, and Pop Culture
This class was amazing--we looked at pop culture and critiqued it through a very feminist lens. We watched shows and discussed how they were problematic and how they were progressive. It was an amazing class taught by an amazing teacher!
For this project, we looked at a show, movie, or commercial and discussed how it was problematic and re-wrote it (or discussed how we would rewrite it) and made a visual project connected to it. I wrote about the homophobia in friends and discussed how few shows we have like Friends that are in any way diverse (in race, sexuality, body type, class, etc.). So I re-wrote all the characters making making all of them queer in some way, and made little character cards discussing their personality traits and writing an outline for an episode about them. These two were my favourites: Chandler and Monica re-written. I wish I could find the character cards so I could type up what I said about them, but you can use your imagination!
This was the class I took to determine whether or not I should be in the Individualized program, which I've written about a few times here. Now you all know I was accepted (!!), but here was my final project for the class, showing how I would combine my journaling, textiles, and fashion into my own art.
Here's my final artist statement at the end of the course (which we worked on throughout the class, making approximately 245340987 drafts to come to the final, still working, statement)
I’ve kept a carefully catalogued documentation of the moments in my life in the form of over 30 journals over the last 10 years. Because of the obsessive nature of my documentation, each journal has become a representation of myself at that time. Through a collage of collected and saved items, the journals capture these series of selves in an overflowing, and yet organized chaos.
The art I create takes the multi-layered, playful, and interactive elements of these journals and turns that into clothing. The journals serve as a pattern for the ensembles I create–the clothes reflecting the writing, drawings, and collage in pockets, tags, and layers of garments. These ensembles of garment upon garment capture a moment in time in a similarly layered fashion.
Using a hybrid of textiles techniques, I create full looks that embody, excite and interact with the wearer in the same way that my journals do. The use of text and imagery through fabric silk-screen and embroidery will reflect the writing and illustration in my journals, just as the materials I intertwine through weaving, sewing, and knitting will reflect the collage. These ensembles will thusly have many emotional, evocative, and literal layers.
"The Vulnerability of Undressing": This project was to prove we belong in the individualized program by showing our hybridity of different processes. This final project's prompt was to take a project you viewed as a failure and re-make it in some way. I took this secrets project I made last year, which looked okay in the photos but looked horrible in person and actually literally fell apart during the critique and my teacher singled me out as someone who had "poor construction" and made me cry. For this dres I took the "body box" which was all about my body hate, exaggerating all the things I had felt self conscious about at one time or another (hairy, big nipples, not flat stomach, tiny boobs etc.) and made it into a reversible dress. The outside showed an x-ray of all the foods I feel guilty for eating (which came from a misprint of the food print background) and the inside showed all the exaggerated body-hate I had, with thick acrylic yarn as hair. There were two pockets on the outside of the dress, which were printed with all the secrets I'd discussed through the boxes I made and more, printed on white fabric with white ink, making them visible but hard to read, and even further obscured by embroidered imagery depicting some of the secrets I'd written about.
Fashion Studio 1:
This class was just furthering our sewing skills, teaching us proper techniques in sewing and pattern-making.
The final project for this class was called "sustainability", which forced us to problem solve in a very project-runway type way. We had to make a new garment out of two old thrifted men's button-ups. I took one linen shirt and one denim and made this little tunic dress! I used the under-collar of the denim shirt as a collar for my dress, the sleeves as pockets, and the upper-collar as a pocket detail. I also used the fronts of the shirts as the back of the dress, lining up the buttons for a full button-up back.
This class was all about embroidery, sewing, and story telling. We learned embroidery stitches and worked on long projects that included learning quilting techniques, embroidery stitches, and listening skills.
This projects prompt was to be inspired by Victorian samplers and women's silence in their sewing in the Victorian age and make a project about something we felt we couldn't talk about. I made this handkerchief discussing my fear and anxiety about Global Warming. I wrote a rant about everything I'm afraid of in my own rambling handwriting which I laboriously stitched in variegated cotton thread across the handkerchief. On top of the words are flowers symbolizing the emotions I feel (in black and white to symbolize the destruction of nature). Lily of the Valley for sensitivity, Convolvulous Major for extinguished hopes and eternal sleep, and the Bay Leaf, meaning "I change but in death".
This handkerchief is part of a series of handkerchief's I'm working on right now for next year's textiles show...there will be updates soon!
Process pictures of this project called "For Grandma"
"For Grandma": When my grandmother was in 1st grade, she drew fire. When her teacher asked her where she learned to draw fire so realistically she responded “ I just looked”. Her teacher brought the drawing to every classroom.
My grandma singles that moment out as when she first knew she was an artist. As I interviewed her I heard fire coming up again and again as a sort of motif; her passion for art and life was fiery, her love for my grandpa and her 6 kids was warm, her big dinners for my extended family (using fire to cook things). Her whole house is even bathed in light. Out in the garden where we talked for over two hours, I actually got a sunburn. Everything about her is fire.
Using mostly warm colors, I patched together three pockets with three themes. One pocket about her and my grandpa’s love; a background of hearts with butterflies flying across it (in her own words “butterflies are the house of the soul”) and an appliqued hook earring which she used to “catch” my grandpa with the embroidered date “June 1956”, when they were married. Another pocket shows the meals she cooks for our big family gatherings; a big part of how i grew up. I painted the background fabric as the tile that’s above her stove. The last pocket is her passion for art. Using the imagery that made her realize she was an artist, I created a fire using pieces of different flowers. I also hand printed the jacket fabric, adapting my grandma’s own art: a broken plate print she designed to recognize her creative and passionate spirit. Using her actual words in the inside of the jacket, this piece tells my grandmothers story in the form of clothing that she would actually wear.
This class taught dying and painting fabric techniques. While it was probably my least favourite class I still learned really valuable techniques that I'm happy to know.
"Hellfire (She Remembers)": This dress takes the idea of cloth remembering resist techniques: holding the memory of the ties or stitched resist that manipulated them as a way to talk about the earth’s memory. Each layer represents an element (Rain is the arashi (”storm”) shibori outside of the dress, earth is the front inside of the dress, air is the back inside of the dress, and fire is the “hellfire” underwear. “She remembers” refers to mother earth’s memory. (All pieces sewn, dyed, and embroidered by me)
This planning for my Klimt Dress looks better than the actual dress I made so I'm just gonna leave just the plan here. I feel I have more work to be done for the Klimt Dress. I'm thinking I may wear it next year for Halloween...
Fashion Studio 2:
This lined jacket was the final project for this class. I combined a lot of the textiles techniques I learned this semester into my sewing, overdying the black fabric with indigo to create this splotchy green effect and making this yarn fringe by individually sewing the yarn onto the jacket.
I've been keeping a journal in some form or another since I was eight years old and in the past 12 years, have accumulated over 30 filled journals. Because of the obsessive nature of my documentation, each journal has become a representation of myself at that time. Through a collage of collected and saved items, the journals capture these series of selves in an overflowing, and yet organized chaos.
The art I create takes the emotional and personal layers of my journals and imbues that into the drawings, embroidery, weavings, sewing, and clothing I create. It takes the multi-layered, playful, and interactive elements of these journals and mirrors them through a collage of techniques and medium.