The Bee Holder

Entitled, The Bee Holder, art-quilt 30.5"x30.5"
This piece was purchased by the University of Houston and
hangs in the U of H Women's Resource Center.
Picasso meets Klimt was the initial inspiration behind the imagery of this art-quilt. However, as the work evolved I began to receive symbolic nudges.  Thinking about beauty being in the eye of the beholder, the phrase 'bee holder' flashed into my mind and I was off to research symbolism associated with the bee.  I learned that just one of the many associations was 'right use of creativity and imagination'.  That did it!  I adjusted my pattern to include two arms wrapped around the woman's knees rather than one, and placed a vintage bee stickpin between her thumb and fore finger.  The orange hair, which was part of the original design, fit perfectly with the representation of creativity as orange is the color of the chakra associated with creativity.  I plan to add beading at some point but think this piece actually reads well without it due to the gold fabric of the spirals and small squares.

Update:  Purchased by U of Houston in the fall of 2013!!!

Journey Women

Entitled, Journey Women,(aka Lady Blue) 12"x30" art-quilt
This piece was done to commemorate the sixteenth anniversary of a women's circle that is dedicated to personal and spiritual growth.  This was a circle I gave myself for my 40th birthday by extending an invitation to four women.  We gathered together monthly for the first four years and continue to do so several times a year.  Symbolic in nature, the figure represents each of the women as individuals while embracing the five member group as a whole, represented in the bouquet she holds in her hands.  Free motion quilting extends the bouquet into a garden of flowers that cover the entire area of her dress.  Leaf and spiral patterns within the body symbolize the ever growing nature of their commitment to introspection and evolution. The batik background was echo quilted following the floral pattern in the cloth.

It was great fun designing and executing this piece and it has proved to be the jumping off point for several works in this style that feature women as the main subject. Upon completion the figure resembled one of the group members whose birthday happen to fall on the month of our next gathering.  Synchronistically, the flower symbolism also represented her family.  Therefore it seemed only fitting that this piece hang in her home.