going with it

Texture, detail, flow and mystery. Those are my muses. I work in fabric because of it. Joining pieces of cloth with stitch mimics the way my thoughts labor toward understanding. Each bit brings me a little closer to a dialog, each stitch animates the landscape.

I started this piece a week ago. There was no plan. I chose instead to let the scraps tell me who their neighbors should be.

Steeples and antennas fascinate me. They reach toward space with great force, probing the mysteries.

There was some wonkiness in my piecing, a little wave of impatience showing in the edges.

Adding a horizontal grid of black on black stitching created a subtle atmosphere behind the structures and stabilized the wonkiness.

Stitched details add life to the passive two dimensional surface.

Pieces like this make me smile, they seem to need a soundtrack.

I haven't named it yet. It needs to stay on the board for a little longer.

world view

I am working on a new piece inspired by the news again. I have a scalloped edged tablecloth with some hand-embroidered olive branches in the corners that started my thought process. First step is to stitch in the geography. Interesting how following the lines of our coasts makes me feel like I am suspended over the pole looking down.

world view, work-in-progress

world view, work-in-progress


time away

I spent a delightful weekend in Little Rock meeting many SAQA members (and potential SAQA members) at the Southern Voices regional exhibit. The folks there were gracious with their praise of my work and eager to talk about art and quilts and how sometimes they are the same thing. 

Upon my return I walked into my studio to see this work in progress with slightly new eyes. It's about 80% done...I think...but still lacks something. Not sure what that is yet. So I wlll let it stew for awhile. Many of my pieces go through this rest time. It is always a challenge to reinvigorate my excitement about a piece after I leave it for awhile. There are times when the piece gets put away for months only to reemerge with new life later. This one may be one of those. 

I do love those scallop edges though. 

work in progress, Connections, Paula Kovarik

there is a method to the madness (sometimes)

Paula Kovarik, 2013.

basting a piece for final stitch work gives me time to think about how the fabric will react to manipulation. Since I have chosen to work with recycled materials there are often worn sections or stains to contend with. I admit to adding a few of my own stains in the process at least a pin prick of blood, an accidental tea stain, or, with this piece, a little pigment die. So when I saw this shading on the pale ground that was shaped sort of like a wolf, I just had to add him to the composition. The longer I work with a piece the looser the basting (as evidenced above) Thing is, I have been more interested lately in how those loose threads look than I am in finalizing the piece. Must focus. must focus.

the deadline approaches

I am preparing for a gallery show here in Memphis that begins on Nov. 2. Of course that brings a shiver of insecurity, a shake of delight and a shimmer of panic. I have three weeks to prepare all pieces. Most are finished but some are still in gestation stage. And that means long hours with the needles.

Here are three that need final touches.

Works in process, Paula Kovarik.