THE “STITCH-MARK” IN PAINTINGS
One of the important concepts from the very beginning of “The Threads Project” was taken from the “two lists” that I made. One had a list of terms that referred to textiles: “thread, stitches, sewing, applique'”, etc. The other listed terms that referred to “traditional” art elements such as drawing, painting, printmaking, collage. I had decided to blur the boundaries of “fine art” and “craft”, which was for me my interest and experience with textiles and surface design. To do this I made analogous images, combined elements, materials, and processes into “hybrid” works which often did not fit in any usual category. On my list was of course painting and at this point I began to work with fluid acrylics on canvas, for the most part.
In 2004 there were scheduled two solo exhibitions of THE THREADS PROJECT for which of course, a substantial number of works were needed. I had completed many works by this time but had yet to really begin my intention to use the themes and ideas in paintings on canvas. Once begun however, painting became a most productive area indeed and resulted in a new “generation” of work that has since become known as “Webs And Threads”.
Linking the paintings to previous drawings, textiles and works on paper, I often incorporated actual thread onto the surfaces, using the “stitch-mark” both as a textural “thread-drawing” element and as a graphic motif with fluid acrylics.
This triptych, “Elements” from 2004, is named for “Earth”, “Water”, and “Air” and features actual thread as well as acrylic “stitch-marks”.
ELEMENTS Triptych 2004 Acrylic, thread on cotton twill on foamboard Each 20 x 20″
ELEMENTS-AIR Acrylic, pastel, thread on cotton twill on foamboard 20 x 20″
EIGHT 2004 Acrylic, acrylic mediums, thread on eight 12 x 12″ canvases, overall 48 x 24″
THE ROAD HOME 2004 Acrylic on canvas 48 x 24″
“The Road Home” was given this title to mark a sense of finding my way in painting. As a relative stranger to painting in the formal sense, I felt that I could at last call myself a painter as this large work was completed. The “map-like” quality of this work would be echoed in a series of works on paper created somewhat later, “Four Maps For Karibib”. These were done for the occasion of an invitational exhibition in Karibib, Namibia in August of 2005.
FOUR MAPS FOR KARIBIB-INTERIOR 2005 Acrylic , thread
FOUR MAPS FOR KARIBIB-NEW CONTINENT 2005 Acrylic on Okawara paper 36.5 x 39″
These are two of the four “maps” created for an international invitational exhibition in Karibib, Namibia in 2005. Since I was going to travel 11,500 miles to participate in “Art Action-Seven Fires”, I came up with the idea of making these works on the amazing Okawara paper, folding them into small sizes and carried them in the side pocket of my luggage all the way to Africa. They were displayed by hanging them on a steel wire with clear acrylic clips. Guests and visitors were able to walk around all sides to view them. It was much like “hanging laundry” and the resilient nature of the Okawara paper survived the folding, traveling, and hanging in fine form.