The other day I was rummaging through the studio looking for something when I came across a large folder stuffed with a handful of some of the old cartoons I have used over the years. I thought they may be worthy of a post.
Many years ago I was walking along a beach where I lived and came across the most amazing piece of driftwood. As soon as I saw this strangely formed piece, I knew that I wanted to weave two shaped tapestries to fill in the obvious gaps that were almost a perfect half round and triangle. It was so big that it was hanging out of the back of the hatchback car I had at the time. Being NZ Native hard-wood it was also extremely dense and heavy, with a deep rich golden/red grain. I knew it would polish up beautifully.
|Eye & I|
Shaped tapestry weaving on canvas and Pohutukawa frame.
It took a bit of planning and thought to nut out how I would best be able to present it as a completed work. Because Coromandel, where I was living, was surrounded by sea, I finally decided on a look that was indicative of sailing, and I also wanted it to be both pre and post European in appearance. The hardest part about incorporating driftwood into a design is to have the resulting work remain rustic in appearance, but not too clumsy and kitsch.
|Cartoons for weavings|
|Cartoon was woven from bottom straight edge, up. This is a really good simple |
shape to start experimenting with.
I have used shaped edges on my tapestries from time to time, usually along the beginning and end edges of the weaving, such as the weaving below, which was obviously woven side-ways.
|Rapunzel Gets A Life|
It was one of two weavings that had a dark nursery theme. They were both framed behind glass, mounted onto and surrounded by a generous sized matt-gold board, with quite a heavy gold frame which gave them an even more surreal presence on the wall.
|In Search Of Nanook|
Of course things get a little trickier when both ends of the weaving need to be shaped. Diane Ammar is a NZ tapestry weaver who has self-published at least two books on her particular technique for shaped weaving. Some are delightfully fine and intriguing works. This is the link to the American Tapestry Alliance site review. http://www.americantapestryalliance.org/Members/NLv31n4/NLv31n4p8.html
|Window 2 - Part of installation at Franklin Steel Gallery.|