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27 April 2014

New Work: Looking Back

My latest portrait was created as part of the Viewpoints9 challenge "Memories of the Movies and September."

For as long as I can remember, September has meant the beginning of school.  This month, my son and I have been on the road visiting colleges. Hours of driving, talking and sharing music have allowed me to get to know the amazing person he is today.

This piece is a an exploration of nostalgia and how it prevents us from seeing the truth about the past as well as the present.

Photo Apr 19, 6 38 48 PM

Title: Looking Back
T
echnical details: hand dyed cotton fabric, cut and layered, raw edge applique, machine quilted using free motion stitching.
Finished size: 18" H x 27" W

17 April 2014

Upcoming Exhibitions: Windham Textile History Museum and New Britain Museum of American Art

"Honey Bee" will make its debut at the Windham Textile & History Museum on May 16, 2014. 

I made this piece especially for the Inspiration Quilts: Then and Now exhibition.  Twelve artists were invited to create a modern interpretation of one of the museum's antique quilts.

The show runs from May 16 – Sept 7, 2014
Opening Reception is May 24, 1:30 – 3:30 pm

HoneyBeeSM

Windham Textile & History Museum
411 Main Street
Willimantic, CT 06226
http://www.millmuseum.org/

Then later this fall…

I'm thrilled to share the news that I've been asked to loan my fiber artwork "New Year's Eve" to the prestigious New Britain Museum of American Art (NBMAA), for their upcoming show:

"Stitched in Time: American Quilts 1758-2014" 
October 4, 2014 – January 4, 2015

New-britain-museum-of-american-art

Museum curators have selected examples of masterful quilts and fiber art from over two centuries of textile history.  I can't wait to see the show and visit NBMAA's beautiful gallery.

New Britain Museum of American Art
56 Lexington Street
New Britain, CT 06052
http://www.nbmaa.org/

I'm grateful to SAQA for this opportunity, because my work was brought to the attention of NBMAA by way of the Studio Art Quilt Associates' annual "Portfolio" book. 

SAQA-Portfolio20-cover_lgThe SAQA Portfolio contains full page color images of fiber art by SAQA's Juried Artist Members.

It is available for purchase through the SAQA online store.

10 April 2014

New Work: Three Amigos

I decided I had too many projects "started" and not enough of them finished.  So why not take a nice little one and just get it done?

Done!  The Three Amigos: Dawson, Brady and Darby
finished size: 12"x12"

Photo Apr 10, 11 39 50 AM

I'm not sure where this particular piece will end up.  It might make a good candidate for the SAQA Benefit Auction. But for now it's adding a bit of adorable fuzziness to my studio.

Photo Apr 10, 11 40 12 AM
(Detail)

07 April 2014

Working on the Next Portrait, "Joe"

It has taken over 10 years for me to work up the courage to attempt this portrait! One of the last photos taken of my dad before he passed away in 2000, and one of my favorite images:

Dad
Joseph P. O'Brien 1939-2000
Photo by Patrick O'Brien

My mom and each of us 4 "kids" have this particular photo hanging in our homes.  It's just such a perfect representation of my dad.  From the loving smile and the scarf he always wore, to the rolled up sleeves and coffee mug.

So you can see why this is particular composition is very personal and dear to me, and the members of my family.  Which is probably why I have always "chickened out" of starting it before.

However, this is "The Year of Stepping Outside Comfort Zones!" Okay I just made that up, but let's go with it.  As Hippocrates reminds us: Ars longa, vita brevis (Art is long, life is short).

14 - 1 (1)
"Joe", pencil sketch by K.Themel, 2014