Friday, November 4, 2016

Vermont Studio Center (The First Half)

I arrived at The Vermont Studio Center On Sunday, October 23rd. I unpacked my stuffed car and settled into my studio and living space for the next month. Outside my studio window construction workers dressed in their flannel wool jackets are working on building the foundation for the new building,  as I begin to build a foundation for my new work.

My studio space, day #1

The view from my window

I took a tour of the grounds here at VSC and we were told that it is the beginning of hunting season and that if we decide to walk in the woods we should wear bright orange hats for our safety. I also explored the town a bit and found the Johnson Mills, a family run business that has been manufacturing woven woolen cloth since 1842. I bought some scraps from the remnants room and planned to use them into my work.

I began working on a clasped warp that I had recently made with Mihoko. I cut the woolen strips smaller and wove them onto my fabric.

My first clasped warp

I ended up using this fabric to embellish hats...

Thinking about those ugly orange hats and my growing interested in the realm of social practice, I decided that this would be a great place to try out an exchange. Participants could come visit my studio with an orange hat and I will embellish that hat with some of my woven fabric in exchange for their labor and conversation. In the end, everyone that participates works together to create a community weaving and leaves with an orange hat that is not as ugly... Really, it's all for your own safety...

Cathy was my first participant.
So far, fifteen people have done this. Here are some photos to illustrate the process...


Daphne's weaving contribution


Anne's weaving contribution

Dara's Weaving contribution
When the exchange is complete, I ask each participant to sign my book and write a comment if they would like about the process. This is what Dara wrote,

" A loom is a brain, and wool becomes words woven in unexpected ways, together creating a tunnel that becomes story, and the time it takes to make becomes the way we choose to live our lives- like jazz, like a symphony or like a solo voice singing in the woods visible only as a bobbing head of the brightest orange, adorned with your beautiful weaving. Thank you thank you!! Dara"

The community fabric so far...

In between working on the Orange Hat project, I cut may piece of this shape from the wool from the Johnson mill and from other woven piece of fabric that I had brought with me and began to collage them into new beginnings...

The orange shapes are from a community weaving I did years ago at the Danforth.

I used the scraps to make miniature pieces

When it was time to add painted color, I tried it out first on the smaller pieces...


Thank you to Jenny and Thayer for helping me out and allowing me to experiment in the print shop.

I look forward to what happens in the second half of my experience here at the Studio Center.

Is it finished?

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