Saturday, June 30, 2012

Leaf Song

My exhibition is titled 'Taking leaf of my senses' for good reason! It has been challenging but fun to explore new ways of using leaf prints and imagery in my work. This is an ongoing fascination for me. Above is a detail of 'Leaf Song #1' one of three hemp pieces more than 3 metres long that will hang from the ceiling in the central part of the Warwick Art Gallery July 5- August 19.
Like a piece of music the song begins quietly and builds in intensity and energy. 'Leaf Song #3' detail. I have my fingers crossed that they look as good as I am imagining!

Friday, June 29, 2012

Marion's quilts

Always lovely to see work begun in a workshop, in it's completed form. Marion was a student in my 4 day Textile Souvenirs workshop in April at the Contextart Forum in the Blue Mountains. She introduced me to feathers for printing and printed this on kimono silk. Doesn't it look wonderful surrounded by the wide charcoal border?
This is her quilt using kimono silk off-cuts and both these quilts are BIG. Thanks for sharing Marion.
My exhibition is on from July 5- August 19 Mel.

Thursday, June 28, 2012


Feeling a litle like this at the moment as I prepare for my exhibition Taking Leaf of my Senses which opens next week. I keep reminding myself to take small steps and it will all come together.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012


The Viewpoints 9 symbol challenge is being unveiled and there are many thought provoking responses.
'Fragments' is the title ofmy work and I have chosen to represent the group with a symbol- the white circular motif with the 9 dots on the animal hide.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Weekend photos

Our workshop group L-R me, Jana, Rhonda, Kirsten our tutor, Lilly, surrounded by some of our day 2 work.
One participant Omila had to leave early, but we unwrapped her 6 metre silk sari bundle. It is beautiful as you can see above.
Rhonda's leaves.
 On the left, dress and sash by Jana and on the right a panel by Lily.
The Viewpoints 9 Challenge 2 is being revealed over the next 2 days, so check back to see what we have made in response to the Pi challenge.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Weekend workshop

Had such a great time learning about what to do with leaves, water, heat, silk, some additives and even cabbage! Sounds like a cooking class but we were cooking up some lovely natural dye solutions for our fabric.
The magic happens and the predictability of outcome is surrended which is much more relaxing.
The before shot.
Unwrapping the bundle.
The fabric, ready for the next layer or stitch. Kirsten Ingemar lives at beautiful Brunswich Heads in Northern NSW and will run another workshop in August. She is available for commissions and sells homewares, wraps, scarves and art pieces at the Verandah Gallery 36 Mullumbimbi St Brunswick Heads.
As Jane commented, it is a beautiful spot with the river and beach close by.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Natural dyeing

I'm taking some time out this weekend to become familiar with natural dyeing under the tutelage of Kirsten Ingemar of Brunswick Heads. Who knows where this will lead?
This photo is for your enjoyment- a beautiful plant spilling out of a pot.

Friday, June 22, 2012

My favourite art work

My favourite art work from the GOMA  Contemporary Australia: Women exhibition was this ensemble of figures 'A Wake' sculpted from odds and ends. Judith Wright used a limited colour palette which tied it all together. Red was the colour accent and the dramatic lighting gave the orchestra a real presence.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Textiles at GOMA exhibition

It has been a long time since I saw so many textile works in 1 exhibition, but the ongoing Contemporary Australia: Women at GOMA had quite a few. This is a taste of what is there.
A painted hessian tunnel. Sorry I didn't get the artist's name, but as I recall it was a group effort.
This is an exterior view of the above.
This piece filled a room with the billowy folds and was 2  fabric panels depicting a mother and daughter. A little like a collapsed Ron Mueck larger than life sculpture, individual hairs and features were discernible.

Bind Cole used emu feathers on mdf board for this message, 'I forgive you'.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Contemporary Australia: Women GOMA

From Love Lace to this exhibition, Contemporary Australia: Women at the Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane. Hiromi Tango repurposes cloth and other 'junk' into her creations which are huge. This one went to the ceiling.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Love Lace exhibition

This exhibition is at the Powerhouse Museum, just behind the Darling Harbour exhibition centre where the quilt show was held. The exhibition is spread over 2 galleries and is amazing. In the foyer is this entry by Australian artist Ingrid Morley.
Even the lichen on the windscreen added lace to 'Lorrie'.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Back from Sydney

Had a lovely time in Sydney despite the grey skies and drizzle. This photo was taken on the one sunny day.
Jenny Bowker's featured quilt in the Master Quilter category was a tribute to Margaret Rolfe and Australian quilters will recognise the background blocks from Margaret's books.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Sydney Quilt Show

I'm visiting the Sydney Quilt Show at Darling Harbour for the next couple of days, a mini-break talking to like minded friends and indulging in browsing stalls, thumbing books and relaxing. The Quilters' Guild of NSW is celebrating 30 years and has a new category this year for Master quilters, traditional and contemporary.
'By the Pond' is in the Masters and 'Rusty', above is in the Art quilt category. They haven't been seen in Sydney before. On Thursday June 14, 11am I'm talking about 'By the Pond'. You can also hear many wonderful quilters talk about their work each day from Wednesday to Sunday. The winning quilts can be seen on the Guild website.
I'll be back to chat on Monday.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

'Shake the Tree'

The final blue quilting before the black binding was stitched in place. Interesting how this quilt was used as a jumping off point for the next 40cm square quilt I made for one of my 2 entries for Australia Wide #3. I think this is a good reason to keep working, developing ideas and designs; some will hit the mark and you will have a series and a body of work!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Our holiday

Today we are having a public holiday in Australia. Most States are celebrating the Queen's Birthday and Queensland has happily been doing this since I can remember. However on listening to the radio this morning I discovered that Queensland will in the future celebrate on October 1 rather than the second Monday in June. So today is our celebration of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee.
Is it change for the sake of change? Am I getting old and cranky and want things to remain the same? Hmmm.....

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Design progress

Remember this quilt design from last Saturday's post? I have it quilted now and a title too.
'Shake the Tree' has vertical lines quilted in the background.
The raw edges were stitched in zigzag using the walking foot then free motion echo stitched in a vibrating design in yellow.
Extra vibrations stitched in blue rayon.

Almost, but not quite.
Brenda, thanks for telling me about the Hakea laurina,  a native of south-west Australia. Lots of images on google.
Jan, I will probably admire the African fabric for some time!

Friday, June 8, 2012


Bob had a short trip to Malawi, Africa and came home with a gift for me.
This fabric is commonly worn by the local women as sarong skirts and used as baby carriers. He was told the bright colours are more favoured than the duller colours of Malawi manufactured cloth, which he was unable to buy.

Thursday, June 7, 2012


This is a coincidence! At the Werribee Zoo car park I photographed a flowering gum. I had never seen this flower before. It is a beautiful ball shape and the colours were striking.
Imagine my surprise when I was auditioning fabric for a quilt backing and in my stash of Australian print fabric I found a replica of the gum blossom and all the stages of the flower.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Pi Challenge at Viewpoints 9

Today I've posted my progress so far with the Pi Challenge set by Betty Busby, a Viewpoint 9er on the Viewpoints blog. Click on the bold highlighted link and it should take you here. This photo is a teaser of the start of my design process.

Monday, June 4, 2012

In print

A couple of my friends and I are in print this month. Diane Wright has a feature story 'Sketchbook keeping for textile artists' in Quilting Arts magazine June/July Issue 57 pages 12- 18.
In this same issue of Quilting Arts, Martha Wolfe in the 'In the spotlight' artist on pages 86-88.

And my story on' Quilting in Mongolia' is in Issue 152 of Down Under Quilts magazine pages 72-76. You can subscribe for free digital editions of the magazine.