There is no doubt that my different environments have informed my work, and as Twelve by Twelve was a large part of my artwork for five years, it's been interesting to see the changing influences over that period of time.
In Virginia, I had the good fortune to become a member of McGuffey Art Center in Charlottesville, where I enjoyed several years of attending a weekly life drawing group and where I was able to realize the goal formed several years prior of showing my Army wife series of art quilts and other domestic textiles in a gallery setting.
|The Army Wife :: McGuffey Art Center, Sept 2014|
While in Charlottesville, had the pleasure of being part of another group of talented female fiber artists, Fiber Transformed, and in it found like-minded friends.
With my husband's time in the Army winding down, and our proximity to Washington, DC, my artwork shifted from my personal story towards larger themes of social commentary. My quilt, 'Murica was accepted into Quilt National '15 which realized another goal for me.
Just after moving across country to Oregon, and purchasing our very first house, I finished up a work that I had started in Virginia, and am proud to say that it was accepted into the joint SAQA/Textile Museum show Tales of Migration, which has just closed, but enjoyed many months of positive attention and press both in the DC area and in broader reaching publications. My piece, Home is Where The Army Sends Us is about creating community wherever you go.
|Home is Where The Army Sends Us :: photo by Mark Frey|
Since this piece however, I have been focusing my creative energies on our fixer-upper house. It's been deck build overseeing, bathroom tiling, and lots and lots of painting for the last twelve months. I also took on a part time job at my local quilt shop, The Pine Needle, to help pay for the home renovations. It's been that and so much more, as the job has connected me with many local quilters, and given me the opportunity to sew samples, write patterns, and begin to teach a class or two. Being at the Pine Needle has reignited my love for more utilitarian bed quilts, but there will always be art just below the surface.
|Foursquare Quilt :: Pattern available at The Pine Needle Quilt Shop|
2015 was a year of transition for me, and I'm not sure where I'll be headed artistically in the years to come, but there is no doubt in my mind that I'll be keeping in touch with my fellow Twelves, and we'll be sharing our stories of art and discovery for many years to come.