Time to get serious

With the thought of blank white gallery walls waiting, I have begun in earnest to create a new body of work. There will be a combination of formats hopefully including some drawing, painting and some 3D installation things, but those are still being thought through. For now, the first is a quilt. Yes, I know, my subject matter isn't getting any lighter. A kind gentleman suggested to me recently that if I 'made work with a cheerier subject matter I might hope to sell more'. I didn't enlighten him of the fact that of these 'miserable' quilts I have only two left, and those only because really, I'm not sure I want to part with them just yet.

I hoped you might be interested to see the new one as it develops so here's the first stage.

'Restless Heart', digital collage for quilt, 2014

This is a digital collage created in Photoshop. There are just three components, the photo I took of the swallow, a gorgeous crumbly wall and some text. I'm using the text on a tiny scale so it reads as pattern from a distance, but up close is readable. It's the same line repeated over and over. 

'Will your restless heart come back to mine?"

When the fabric arrives, Jamie will print this for me onto a medium weight cotton. It'll be about 1.5 metres high by about 1 metre or so wide. No matter how many times I work this way the thrill of seeing how an image created on a screen and seen only small translates to a large print on fabric never fades. Once printed I'll then begin the additional surface design that I'm planning. There will be some paint, maybe some colour removal with discharge paste and most definitely lots of stitch.

What's it all about? All this work for me is symbolic and the bird and wall are metaphors for, amongst other things, stability, change, fragility, control, loss, love, fear. It's an illustration of a gut feeling.

Aside from my own personal thoughts, it's a bit tough lately to watch the news. In fact I've given it up. Our existence on this beautiful planet on so many levels seems to grow increasingly and painfully precarious. Maybe there's a bit of that in there too. 


  1. Truly wonderful. Very excited about seeing this series. On another note, the fingerprint fabrics I ordered from you are gorgeous. I love the weight of Linda's bird prints and when snow flies here and the lure of the outdoors fades, I will be using the many panels I bought. Thank you for the free shipping offer. (I may have to buy more!!)

  2. Beautiful....can't wait to see the continued progress.

  3. Very beautiful and evocative. Well done for exploring those darker feelings. Will watch progress of this quilt with great interest.

  4. Very poignant imagery - I wonder if that old fellow would have said the same to Francis Bacon?


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