FINALLY! I have finished my latest art quilt, Modern Venus.
I am so happy to have completed this gigantic project. It’s taken forever, mostly due to its size and the fact that we moved a bunch of times during the making of it. I’m really pleased with how it turned out, too.
As you can probably tell, this piece is a riff on Botticelli’s Birth of Venus, which led to the name I gave it: Modern Venus. I find works by other artists very inspiring, and I find that studying a work in the context of creating something inspired by it helps me to understand the original piece and notice the little details that I might not otherwise.
As do my previous art quilts, this one features a main figure inspired by Blythe. I also wanted to give the main figure unruly hair that would overwhelm the rest of her.
This figure is also menaced by moths which are swarming toward her, apparently having emerged from the dark side of the moon. One of the construction techniques I use in my art quilts is a blend of traditional patchwork pieces for the background accompanied by a top layer of appliqued figures/objects. I wanted there to be rough edges on this piece, so I left room for a little bit of fraying around the edges of most of the appliques. The moths are cut out from printed cotton fabric and then appliqued on to the background. I didn’t fully adhere all of them to the background so there is some movement in their wings.
I like to include details that are specific to my own experience, so the trees I created are White Pines, which are native to my home state (and current home) of Michigan.
Now for a little bit of behind-the-scenes: as I may have mentioned, our home has plaster walls, so hanging things is not as quick and simple as with drywall. This means that I don’t have a ready background for photographing large items like this, so I enlisted K’s help.
Thanks to K, we have this terrifically handy frame to use for hanging things. It’s meant for use with a green screen, but it works well for a quilt, too!
K then helped to hold up a temporary background (spare white sheet we normally use as a dust cover for large items in the basement) while I snapped pics.
I’m looking forward to finding a spot for this to hang in our home, as well as to entering it in some upcoming local shows.