Saturday, March 7, 2009

Yellow, yellow, everywhere...

This week I’m thinking about the bright yellows of spring. Our garden has a glorious show of yellow eranthus (winter aconite) on display. The blooms spill over into the lawn but we don’t mind. The first daffodil shoots are finally poking up in our garden and that means the whole town is about to burst into yellow and white. When that show is over and the lawns become lush and green, up will pop a sea of yellow dandelions. Many fail to appreciate these resilient bloomers, but not me—I’m ready to pop off their little heads and use them for dyeing projects. Last year we cleared our yard of blooms and supplemented with a few more from Bryan Park down the road. This yielded a beautiful soft yellow that went into the ornament project, bringing back little yellow puffs of summer well into the winter season. And off I go into a reverie, thinking about weaving long-stem dandelions into crowns with my grandmother from Prague and beachcombing for treasures on Lake Huron, and learning to dye with onion skins. She was a special friend to me, a very classy person and her take on life was far ahead of her time.

This week’s art project is a dandelion display. The flower heads are yarn pom-poms and the stems and veins are made from wire that retired from a career in electrical fencing to focus on art. The leaves are needle felted in place and patterned on a picture from a library book to ensure anatomical accuracy. That’s the downside to having a degree in plant biology I suppose. Anyway, the piece is intended for one of two upcoming shows I’m doing titled: “Inch by Inch and Row by Row”, taken from The Garden Song by David Mallett. The “Inch by Inch” show will be hung in the Showers building downtown on April 1st. This is your official invitation to stop in and see the pieces.

It was also an exciting week for other reasons. The excitement started Thursday morning when I was in the shower, right next to where I broke through the wall to melt the frozen pipes (see January 17 th blog entry). I started to smell smoke, which led to a 911 call, which turned into five fire trucks, an ambulance and a police car sitting in front of the house while the muscular guys in heavy coats carrying axes came running up the stairs to check out me and my shower. I should have thought of that when I was single! They quickly found a fluorescent light ballast that had shorted out, disconnected it, and off they went. Everybody got to school a little late and the HEPA filter got a workout to clear the smell. The real highlight, though, was when I was standing on the front lawn chatting with the fire chief who admired our one-of-a-kind mosaic shutters! They were made by Cappi Phillips, a local mosaic artist and good friend. Before the smoke spiced up my shower, I was getting ready to pick her up and head off to the Heritage Quilt Show with another wonderful Bloomington artist, Dawn Adams. We had a great morning together, and I really admired the quilts of Carol Taylor. I especially liked the leaf patterns in vibrant colors, which got me thinking about—you guessed it—a leaf piece!

Until next week…

1 comment:

  1. Never have dandelions looked so good! It will be nice to see them on the wall, as opposed to in the garden. Nice work!