Saturday, April 07, 2007

jet lag mind blur

it is 3.42 in the morning and I can't sleep!

I have been home 1 day have a million things to do but can't seem to sleep properly yet and am prowling the house like a ghoul in the nightime.

not properly awake and functional and unable to be asleep and getting over it all....bother

here is a picture of a wonderful studio I visied in the States- it is really light and airy, catching all of the suns warmth[it was only a few degrees outside!]

I was privaledged to teach the inaugural workshop in the space.

It belongs to Robin Blakney-Carlson where she runs and /or hosts workshops, is open to having people come and use her facilities to work on large scale peices that can't be done at home and is generally a warm and welcoming person.

It is at Glen Falls which is not far from Lake George- a very picturesque spot. I ran a class and had the chance to meet many of the local felting community- a great fun group and I could see also stimulaing to each other artistically- I would love to see one of their shows, I bet it would be smashing!

Robin and I are talking, behaps taking a lodge on the Lake we will run a weekend felting retreat around the same time next year. I think it would be exciting as it would allow me to get a real eye full of the frozen lake and landscape and I know it would be a stimulating place to chill out, felt and learn... sounds good to me, we'll see what develops perhaps we could use the landscape as a focus to the workshop or work from imagination and dream warm and lush places for those that have enough snow and ice. [I had just escaped the Australian summer and India's warmth so the ice and cold was such a huge contrast!]

Just had a coffee and the mind is starting to kick in...I can start looking over the to do list and get things happening although being middle of the night i don't feel as motivated as in daylight.

Since visiting the Canadian Textile Museum where I would highly recomend the 2 exhibitions on show "Cloth that grows on Trees" and "Colour and Light- Embroidery from India and Pakisthan" -my head has been in a whirl. The shows were very thoughtfully put together, and gently illustrated the role that the textile arts can have in people's lives -especially women's lives.

From my experience in India I can see the difference some of this work is making in making in communities.

Amazing a country that is so poor in one way is so rich and acknowledging it and respecting it and supporting it in other ways. They know there textile heritage and its continued existance is important for their people- mind, body and soul...

Stitch- women's work [ something that is accorded a fairly lowly status in the west] is seen and supported by government policy and many self-help groups-it is seen as a way of empowerment to break the poverty cycle.

I keep saying to myself "Stitch- women's work is what can do it!'' In a kind of shock really- I am an artist who has worked in textile for the last 25 years I have been struggling to make a go from my work..... it ain't that easy.

Luckily I have been able to teach, and now am leading tours which supports my addiction or should I say conviction of wanting to work with my hands

[ and frankly although it sounds wonderful to be going all these places- making the mortgage payments on my simple little house and trying to find the cash for a second- hand car- my other bomb needs to be laid to rest, is extremely difficult]

Still I suppose being able to feed and house the kids is what those people's work is all about and i am able to do a similar thing... what more do i really need?

Typing away here things start to drop a little more into place... I have single handedly supported my family for most of their lives, working from home as a textile artist when they were little allowed me to be there with them... It lead me onto my time teaching in a Waldorf/Steiner school, which also allowed me to be with my boys as they were growing... and it was what lead me to India initially... which in time has lead onto more things... it was my handstitched piece that won me an award a few years ago which got the travel/teaching thing developing.....

so even in the west stitching can change people's lives...I suppose you just have to follow the thread of it.

I hope I am not rambling to much...perhaps i should try and sleep again?

I do have a little list a websites for self-help programmes in India[ I know this is happening in many poorer places- this is just my neck of the woods] let me know if you would like a copy to have a look

good night- I hope....

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi Fiona
Glad you made it home safe and *warm*
We had another day of snow in Rhode Island

It was lovely meeting you and I look forward to reading your blog of adventures.

Rhode Island