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Tuesday, 7 August 2018

Lyubov Popova

Russian abstract artist Lyubov Popova was our topic with the Waverley Art Quilters last month.

None of us had heard of her but one of her paintings is in the latest Victorian National Gallery Winter Exhibition called MOMA. It is an exhibition with works from the New York Modern Art Gallery. I still haven't got around to seeing it yet.

Textile by Lyubov Popova
Lyubov Popova (1889-1924) was a Russian who created abstract and Cubist designs. She developed a fusion of styles and often used black, white and grey to highlight her vibrant colours. She was interested in geometric shapes and used a limited palette of colours. She often worked in a series amd used line and optical illusions to create rhythm.

Lyubov died of scarlet fever at only 35 years old but during her short life she taught art, produced books and textiles and fashion designs. I think she was ahead of her time and was hugely talented.

I took my inspiration from the textile pictured above and pieced a variety of black, white and orange fabrics together.

Add caption

I layered different sized circles on the top and then bravely made 3 cuts with my rotary cutter and shifted the fabrics and sewed them back together.


Normally I would have made the circles blue to make them really pop but I wanted to experiment with the limited colour range like Lyubov Popova did. I liked it more than I expected.

When I quilt I usually change the thread colour to match the fabric but this time I wanted to try just white straight lines like I have seen the modern quilters do.


Fractured by Linda Steele

It was a much quicker way to quilt and I quite liked the clean modern look for a change.

Bye for now,
Linda

Tuesday, 31 July 2018

Victorian Quilters Showcase 2018

Our state quilt show, the Victorian Quilters Showcase is over for another year and it was my first one as Convenor. I must admit that being the Convenor makes it a little more stressful that it had been in the past but now that it's over I think I understand what has to be done and will find it a little more relaxing next time. We'll see!

I was absolutely thrilled to win 1st Place for my miniature, Autumn Dance. It's the first time that I have ever made a miniature.

Autumn Dance by Linda Steele

I actually designed it about 5 years ago and got sick of the pattern hanging around. I had originally intended to needle turn it but I never had the time and knew that I would never get it done and so I used a machine blanket stitch on the edges. That made it more fun and it actually got finished.

I couldn't believe it when I also won Excellence in the use of Colour, usually that prize goes to way out colourful quilts.

My friend Julie Adamson won Best of Show with her quilt, The Apprentice.

The Apprentice by Julie Adamson
Her quilt is hand appliqued and hand quilted and took 11 months to make. Here is a detail photo, the quilt is made using silk and batik fabrics.

The Apprentice detail

Here is a photo of Julie and I just after she had won her award.

Julie Adamson and I

Being the Convenor meant that I was always doing or thinking about something and I didn't take as many photos as I usually do.

Here are some of the photos that I took.

A Very Merry Christmas by Rhonda Irving


Harvey Lane by Shelley Kelly


Abby by Ramona Resurreccion


Man in the Mud by Michelle de Groot


Rings around Australia by Robyn Coots



Virginia Kaleidoscope by Elizabeth Allen


The runner up to Best of Show was Linden Lancaster with her art quilt.

A Place of Reflection by Linden Lancaster


Linden was also one of the Profile a Quilters this year and there was a display of her quilts.

Linden Lancaster in front of some of her quilts


Reed Warblers- Barmah Lakes by Linden Lancaster


Under the Jacaranda by Linden Lancaster


As usual it was a wonderful quilt show and people liked the way we had set out the show, so I hope to do something similar next year.

This show is a tremendous amount of work though and I have spent a lot of time on the computer instead of doing my sewing. Hopefully I will get used to it and manage to get some sewing done as well in the future. Of course I had a lot of help from the committee and volunteers who have been helping for years and they made my job so much easier.

Bye for now,
Linda

Tuesday, 24 July 2018

The Fabric Playground, Beechworth

Last month I managed a mid week get away with my friends to Beechworth. One of my friends won the prize at last years Victorian Quilters Showcase. The prize was for her and 3 friends to Heather's Fabric Playground retreat in Beechworth.

The house where we stayed is a short walk from the centre of the town and it is a bit of a novelty because the front looks like a Hobbit House from Lord of the Rings.

Fabric Playground Retreat

The room pictured above happens to be the room that I stayed in.



So you can see what it looks like from the other side.

My friends and I had a wonderful three days together with lots of chatting, laughing and hand sewing.

Our host Heather looked after us so well and made sure we were well fed. Even though it was a short break, we all felt refreshed.

We spent the days hand sewing beside a lovely log fire.



Heather had recently purchased a very fancy light fitting that really came alive at night.


My photo doesn't do it justice, it is so decorative and pretty.

Beechworth is a really lovely country town with many beautiful shops and a river as well.



The Fabric Playground also has a quilt shop upstairs so we were in heaven. Heather has decorated the house with quilts and has quilting books scattered around for people to read. I also picked up a novel and started to read it, I was enjoying it so much that Heather said I could take it home and return it to her at the next Vic Quilters show. It's called The Dry by Jane Harper and I really enjoyed it.



Before we left we asked Heather to take our photo.



Then Heather's husband appeared so we asked him to take our photo with Heather.



The Fabric Playground can sleep 6 people and Heather only accepts sewing groups. If you are looking for a retreat with friends I can highly recommend the Fabric Playground in Beechworth.

Heather is donating a prize at the next Victorian Quilters Showcase again so I know that whoever wins the prize will really enjoy it.

The Victorian Quilters Showcase is part of the Craft and Quilt Fair that begins on Thursday 26th July and finishes on Sunday 29th July.

It's held at the Melbourne Exhibition Centre, South Wharf which is fondly known as Jeff's Shed! Hope to see you there.

Bye for now,
Linda

Tuesday, 10 July 2018

The Archibald and Wynne Prize 2018

While I was in Sydney a couple of weeks ago I spent a day at the Sydney Art Gallery. I went to see the Lady and the Unicorn Tapestry Exhibition but the Archibald Prize and Wynne Prize exhibition was on at the same time. I couldn't believe my luck.

The Archibald Prize is an annual portrait painting competition and you must paint someone of note or an artist from life. I think there are a regulation of 2 or 3 sittings with the artist and then you can complete it at your studio.

There were a surprising amount of self-portraits on display, many saying that it is too difficult to get busy people to sit for you and people of note have been asked many times and they are not so keen to do it again. Maybe it is the selfie culture that makes self-portraits the obvious choice as well.

The winner this year was a self-portrait by Yvette Coppersmith.


Yvette Coppersmith- Self portrait, after George Lambert


My photo doesn't do it justice, the painting really glowed and I could see why it won.

Although I liked the Archibalds, I much preferred seeing the entries into the Wynne Prize, a landscape prize.



Joshua Yeldham- Bay of Sorrow- Hawkesbury River


This was a large painting but I really liked all the detail in it.

Joshua Yeldham- Bay of Sorrow detail



Nellie Coultard-Country with Acacia Wattle





Tim Storrier- At Sea (For Pamela)


Ray Ken- Sand Dune Country



This last photo was in another room in the Sulman Prize.

Gregory Hodge- Ceremony


It looks as if it is collection of papers collaged together but it is really a clever painting with shadows to make it look 3D. I took a close up photo to show that it's a flat painting but it still looks 3D!!

Gregory Hodge- Ceremony detail

I certainly enjoyed my day at the NSW Art Gallery.

Bye for now,
Linda

Tuesday, 3 July 2018

The Lady and the Unicorn

While I was in Sydney recently I made time to see the Lady and the Unicorn Tapestry exhibition. It was held at the beautiful Sydney Art Gallery.

My host was Lynn from the NSW Quilters Guild and when I got up that morning she had arranged the tickets for us on the kitchen table, I was very excited.




A visitor agreed to take our photo at the entrance.

Lynn and I visit the gallery


The 6 tapestries are usually on display in France and rarely travel, they were woven in the 1500's!

Here is the lovely entrance we walked through to see the tapestries.





The tapestries are large and portray the 5 senses Touch, Taste, Smell, Hearing and Sight. The 6th one is called My Sole Desire, it's the largest tapestry and is thought to illustrate the soul or heart.

Here are some of my photos.


Hearing



The cloth in Hearing reminded me of a quilt

Hearing detail





Touch


My Sole Desire


My Sole Desire detail

My photos do not do these beautiful tapestries justice. There was so much exquisite detail. We'd recently been talking about transparency in the Waverley Art Quilters group, so the transparency in the tapestries caught my eye.


Detail showing transparency


We couldn't resist buying the book about them, it goes into the history and has lots of detailed photos. The exhibition was going to close the following week and so the book was half price. It's always great to get a bargain

The book

I also bought another book called Isms- Understanding Modern Art. it's a lovely little book with some great photos.

Isms book


It was a wonderful day and I was grateful to Lynn to take the time out of her busy schedule to take me.


Bye for now,
Linda

Tuesday, 26 June 2018

Sydney Quilt Show 2018- Guest artists

Bob James and Anna Brown were the guest artists in the recent Sydney Quilt Show. They both had a number of their works on display. I was disappointed that I didn't get to meet them but I did enjoy looking at their quilts.

Bob James runs workshops on Design and Composition that are very popular and I am told that the people in his classes work very hard.

This first quilt is only very small and the strips of silk are only about 1/4" wide.

Silk Collision by Bob James


In contrast this next quilt is large.

Summer in New York by Bob James


Whispers- Abstract geometric by Bob James


This next quilt was actually in the judged show and won a prize.

Homage to NY Abstract Expressionists 1940's

Bob James sounds like a very knowledgeable guy and I wish he lived down in Melbourne and could come along to the Waverley Art Quilters.


The other featured artist was Anna Brown, I have seen her textiles in exhibitions for years so it was lovely to see many of them together. She really has found her signature style.

I love her use of black and white.

Flora 6 by Anna Brown

Flora Canopy no 5 by Anna Brown

What is not obvious from a distance is all the stitch that Anna Brown adds to her work.

Flora Canopy detail by Anna Brown

This next work is slightly different to her usual work but still in her style.


Rain Forest by Anna Brown

I really enjoyed my time at the Sydney quilt show and I will try and get there every year from now on.

To see all the prize winners click on the Sydney Quilt Show 2018 link

To see my previous post on the Sydney Quilt Show, please click here 

Bye for now,
Linda