Friday, January 20, 2023

red catalogne


I blocked red catalogne this week.  

It's a piece I made in 2019 and exhibited in Hard Twist that year.
It was distorted from the repeated wrapping stitch.  
When I showed the piece, I pinned it in two places to the wall and let it take a natural shape.  See here.

wet artwork in a towel

Considering it last week, I thought that I might be able to block it and straighten it out.  (I block almost everything I make these days by washing the textile and then stretching it with pins into a foam design wall. ) 

So....I put the paper and linen cloth into the kitchen sink and ran the tap.

It was risky to put the paper and the linen and the red thread into water.
I wasn't sure if it would work but it did.  It worked.
 
The red thread bled a bit - but that's OK.  So do women.
The paper became a little more frail - but that's OK.  So do people.
The linen cloth responded well to being pulled into shape. 
  
Journal papers couched to a linen tablecloth.
A security blanket for my interior life.

If you are interested in seeing how the piece was made, follow its label, paper catalogne.

2 comments:

  1. paper is surprisingly strong ... rag paper especially, but even paper made from wood fibers can hold its own ... and then there are the tea bags and coffee filters which are by their very nature designed to work with water ...indeed, once upon a time I tried my hand at making paper and had much more difficulty than expected at making the pulp

    still, I suspect you took a long, deep breath before trusting so much work to a tub of water ... what a dead weight it must have been as you took it out ... and I very much appreciate the meaning you found in bleeding threads and fragile paper, even as the linen held its own

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    Replies
    1. Thank you for your comment Liz. Yes, the piece was really heavy and yet fragile when I took it out. I wrung it in the sink as gently as I could to remove most of the water, and then wrapped it in a towel and continued trying to take most of the heavy water out of the fibers before pinning it up.
      I am inspired to make more of these paper quilts - I love the texture in this one. xo

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