Friday, October 24, 2008

a mystery wrapped in ... red

This piece was designed around a fused glass bas relief of an image that keeps begging me to reinterpret it in multiple forms (as is evident from many past posts) :

At first, I was going to stitch her form on white cotton and merely place that under the piece, praying that the image would stir one's soul. Not so. A test run was less than inspiring.

Time for Plan B. Next, I produced this panel in Photoshop, using my original Nude Stitches image:

I established my palette with the left and right images. I hoped the more detailed black and white version would show through the red glass, so I used as much contrast as possible. I printed this on a strip of 20" wide cotton.

For the 'frame," I chose a solid Chinese red and several pieces of turquoise, one of which I had hand dyed some time ago. I altered all fabrics by applying fusible web,which I had painted in various color combinations. Here is one of those pieces of fusible web:

With freeform curved piecing , I made the frame. Here is the piece before quilting:

And here are the three ladies up close and personal:

Now, the test -- will the black and white image show through the red glass, rock my world? You'll soon see!

For texture, I wanted close vertical stitching, echoing the undulating lines of the form. To heighten the effects of the shape of the form, I quilted the lines of the major body parts of each of the three incarnations -- the center one thrice.

Here is the quilted piece, sans binding or glass. Some of the different painted fusible effects are visible here. (The suspense mounts...will the figure emerge from underneath the mysterious glass???)

I bound the piece and got the plexiglass ready, drilling holes with my trusty Dremel tool:

I like to make the backs interesting, so I used a beautiful African fabric:

I printed the label on organza:

What? You don't care to see my stinking label, you wanna see how the glass turned out?

Well, first I had to locate her placement with needles coming up from the back:

Then, I placed the glass over the needles and took my first look at how the image and the glass communicated. Ta da!

I think I love it!!! Even though no light passes through the piece, the image below the glass is quite visible, and the bas relief looks like...bas relief!!! Phew!!! (That's a lot of !!!!!!!s)

Here it is, placed on the kitchen table (which is pale green, as seen through the plexiglass border):

Here it is on a hallway wall, not a great shot, but at least it gives a feel for what it is like when hung:

We hang the Buenaventura Art Association show on Monday (opening reception is Nov. 7) and she will be for sale there. Sniff sniff. I think I will have to have visitation rights if someone buys her.


Anonymous said...

Well, Pamela, I'd definitely give her a home. It's a beautiful piece! But I better not be tempted because your visitation rights might be a problem.

Lorchen in the UK

KarenF said...

Gorgeous!! I love the combination of glass and fabric...I spent 7 years doing glasswork, so it still holds a special place with me. Very well done! I hope you make a great sale, though I can see why parting will be sweet sorrow

norma said...

It's a fabulous piece. Combining the glass and fiber is
stunning and unique.

kathy york said...

Very successful combination of fiber and glass! Thanks for sharing your process. I love the design elements of the entire piece. What else.....ah yes, the plexiglass, good choice! It looks fantastic on the wall.
Kathy York
Austin, TX

zquilts said...

Really beautifully done ! For years I had thought about doing something like that with my glass work ... I am SO happy that you are there! Great work !

Lora Martin said...

Beautiful, Pam. The glass and fabric combos are wonderful and I am looking forward to your show to see several in one place. Hmm...nudes at the Love House...could draw a different crowd than you originally envisioned!

Vivien said...

This is something I've never seen before. Gorgeous! Thanks for sharing your process.

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