Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Art and Soul Radio with Lesley Riley

Christine Adams and I were interviewed by Lesley Riley of Art and Soul Radio on the topic of Sacred Threads. After a short advertisement, listen to our discussion with Lesley about the background, call for entries and the June 22 - July 4 show in the Washington D.C. area. For more information about Sacred Threads, go to www.sacredthreadsquilts.com.

Listen to internet radio with Art And Soul Radio on Blog Talk Radio

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Proud Sponsor of Houston Special Exhibit

I am very pleased to be the sponsor of this Alliance for American quilts exhibit at the Houston International Quilt Festival. If you are in Houston, please stop by. There are fourteen very special pieces included. And there are headphones set-up so you can hear the actual interviews with the quiltmakers. To learn more about this wonderful organization, visit allianceforamericanquilts.org.

Two of the pieces, most special to me are by Vikki Pignatelli, founder of Sacred Threads and Rosa Angula, one of the inmates from the Beyond the Barrier exhibit.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Alliance for American Quilts on exhibit

Yesterday my friend Sandi Goldman and I attended the Original Sewing and Quilting Expo. We both had quilts in the Alliance for American Quilts "New from Old" contest which is currently traveling in preparation for the auction in November. While we were viewing the exhibit, Mark Ingraham interviewed me as one of the members.

Sandi's quilt "Linked to the Past" is the brown piece right under mine. She won a well deserved Honorable Mention by the members of the Alliance.

Monday, September 27, 2010

SAQA Purchases

On the first phase of the SAQA Auction I purchased two pieces. The first one is called "Three Gentoos" and is by Pat Gould.

I also purchased a piece called "Balancing Act" by Patricia Kicklighter.

I am pretty jazzed about my two purchases. 

And also pleased that my piece "It's a  Little Fishy" sold as well. 

A new phase opens today. There are many amazing pieces. Check it out!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Collaboration in Healing Quilts

On September 23rd, I had the pleasure of delivering twelve new art quilts to the University of Michigan. The pieces are based on scientific images taken by researchers in the Center for Organogenesis.

The pieces in the collection were done by Fiber Artists @ Loose Ends.

My piece is called Stem Star and is based on a photo by Shannon Davis.

Stem Star by Lisa Ellis
This is my inspiration photo:

Stem Star by Shannon Davis
This is what Shannon says about Stem Star:
"This is a section of a mouse pituitary gland and nearby neural tube that has been artificially transformed into a star pattern. The neural tube forms the central star, while the pituitary is the bottle-cap shaped structure on the outside of the "stem star". The name, Stem Star, was given because both the neural tube and the pituitary contain stem cells that are responsible for the growth and maintenance of the two organs. The pituitary gland actually derives (in part) from the neural tube; the pituitary is a master gland that controls the activity of other glands that regulate growth, pregnancy, water balance, energy metabolism, blood pressure and the body's response to stress."

I was thrilled to be able to meet Shannon and share our artworks.
Shannon Davis and Lisa Ellis
Other scientists that came to see the unveiling were Sue O'Shea, Deb Gumucio, and Sally Camper. Here they are holding up the piece called "Branching" made by Paula Golden based on the photo by scientists Mara Steinkamp, Graduate Student, Human Genetics and Diane Robins, Ph.D., Professor, Department of Human Genetics.
Sue O'Shea, Deb Gumucio and Sally Camper holding Branching
This project would not be possible without the management and vision of Elaine Sims and Kathi Talley from the Gifts of Art.
Kathi Talley holding Van Gogh's Skin
Van Gogh's Skin was made by Carole Nicholas based on the photo by scientist Mark Hutchin, House Officer, Dermatology.

And here is Elaine Sims with our group quilt called Gastric Rainbow. This piece was made collectively by nine of the quilt artists based on the photo by Jochen Lennerz, M.D., Ph.D., Department of Pathology and Immunology, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO and Jason Mills, M.D., Ph.D University of Washington at St. Louis.
Elaine Sims holding Gastric Rainbow

To see all photos of all the pieces in the collection and the scientific inspiration, check out our Fiber Artists at Loose Ends gallery page.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

SAQA Auction starts September 20th

Studio Art Quilt Associates (SAQA) 12" x 12" auction starts in a week. The last two years I have participated by donating and buying some really awesome pieces. Here is a link to the auction page where you can see how it works: Auction Page.

My piece called "It's a Little Fishy" is on page 1b of the auction page. Here is detailed view of my piece.

It's a Little Fishy. My 2010 SAQA Donation. Bid!  
You might wonder what to do with these small pieces. I used them to decorate. Here are some photos to show you. First up is one of the pieces I purchased last year. It was made by Janice Potter.

Clowing Around by Jan Potter

I took inspiration from Jan's piece and made a large quilt which I call Aquarium. Also, while I was making my donation for this year's auction, I made a second piece to complement Clowing Around. Each of these three pieces are stitched onto stretcher bars covered in a neutral textured decorator fabric. I mounted them over our fireplace in our summer home.

Fireplace in California home

Here is a close-up of the fireplace:

So please on September 20th, bid, bid, bid! It's for a great cause and can be just the thing you need for your home.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Getting Feedback

I have a passion for healing quilt projects. Using my love of quilting to make hospitals better for patients and their families is a calling. This started with my art quilt teacher Judy House and her vision for art quilts at Walter Reed. HealingQuiltsinMedicine.org

I feel called to work on these projects. Feedback is not expected or necessary. And in fact, looking for feedback, can create ego issues and become a motivation which is distracting and gets us off track. I constantly remind myself of a favorite bible verse: "He who exalts himself will be humbled and he who humbles himself will be exalted" (Matt 23:12). So I work on my calling whether there is feedback or not.

Having said that, today I got feedback on our Fiber Artists @ Loose Ends "Art Under the Microscope" exhibit which is currently traveling to hospitals all over the U.S. It just finished up at NIH and is now headed to Vanderbilt.

Here are some of the comments:
“To whom it may concern:
I have been a “visitor” at the University of Chicago Hospital for the past four months, while my husband undergoes chemotherapy for the 2nd time in his life for the re-occurrence of testicular cancer.  In order to get to the Bernard Mitchell Hospital where he is an inpatient, we must travel via the hallway that exhibits ART UNDER THE MICROSCOPE on display.  I cannot tell you how much this exhibit means to myself and family.  Not looking forward to the stay or treatments, this exhibit brings an inner peace and calmness, putting a smile on our face each time we pass by it.  The attention to detail in the beauty that is portrayed is overwhelming.  More hospitals should take the initiative and display artwork that is “one of a kind” and most appreciated.  I believe this exhibit means more knowing the premise behind the beauty of the art is what they are being treated for the human body.  Just as humans evolve, so does this unique art.  A huge fan, many thanks for making an experience that is not so enjoyable, a remembrance.”

“Sublime, brilliant – how we all need the combination of science, art and the miraculous!
Thank you!”

“Incredible, beautiful, wonderful.  One of the best shows I’ve seen in this gallery space.  It spoke to my heart.  Thank you!”

“I especially found the “Escher’s Needlepoint” beautiful – who knew the inside of a mouse’s small intestine could be duplicated into such beautiful artwork.  The entire exhibit was amazing” (Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery)

“I think this is a phenomenal exhibit.  I’ve visited many art museums and this has captured me in a way few others have.  Each piece is excellently done – aesthetically pleasing and scientifically unique.  Fantastic! Thanks for sharing.”

“This is the best part of my commute to work, walking past these gorgeously creative masterpieces!  Great job.  I don’t know now if I want to “grow up” to be an artist or a scientist!!”

“So relevant, original, creative and completely fascinating!  It has a real “WOW” factor – I just loved it.”
So... thank you to the hospital visitors that took the time to provide comments. Thank you to the curator who collected them and to Society for the Arts and Healthcare for sending them to us artists.

I will remain humbled but have confirmation that we are doing important work and making a difference.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative

I have two pieces in the September auction to raise money for Alzheimer's research. There are many really cute pieces. So think about bidding and getting a head start on your holiday shopping!

I made the $1000 promise so I am hoping this will get me closer to my promise. Here is the status of all my pieces:

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Honorable Mention for Shedding New Light on an Old Block

I was very pleased to learn yesterday that my piece Shedding New Light on an Old Block was given an Honorable Mention by the members of Alliance for American Quilts. This is the first time I have ever won anything on a quilt so it means a lot to me.

Here you can see all the winners:
New From Old Gallery

My buddy Sandi Goldman also received an Honorable Mention and the grand prize winner, Jamie Fingal is a friend through SAQA.

The donated quilts will be auctioned off this fall on eBay to raise money for AAQ's programs.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative - $1000 Promise

I have been actively participating in the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative for some time now. I have donated several 9" x 12" pieces called Priority Quilts for auction. I have also puchased books and DVDs, bid and won several Priority Quilts, and given lectures on Healing Quilts.  I decided it was time to make the $1000 promise and donate more Priority Quilts to be auctioned and sold. You can view my progress and read my dedication on my individual promise web page on the AAQI website. This week I sent 3 new pieces. They should arrive in Ami Simms hands sometime today. I hope she is pleased. On Monday at one of my quilt groups, I offered to do a workshop in the Fall to make Priority Quilts. I am excited about getting more of my buddies involved.
Asian Morning

Tiger Lily

Autumn Ginkgo

Friday, June 4, 2010

Gift for My Pastor - Be Still

I made this piece in 2006. Psalm 46:10 is one of my favorite verses. "Be Still and know that I am God". I left off the word "God" because during this time I was also studying Moses's encounter with God at the burning bush and is given God's name as "I Am". Then Jesus uses the phrase frequently: I am... the way, the truth and the life, the alpha and omega, the bread of life, the living water, etc. So when I made this piece I wanted my focus to be on knowing the great "I Am". The all encompassing God who has come down in human form.

My pastor was visiting my house recently and saw this piece and commented on how much he liked it. It reminded him of a ceiling in a place he had traveled that had inspired him. So I gave it to him.

It's always nice as an artist to have people appreciate your work and to see your work hanging in places you visit. I have enough pieces hanging in my own house. It was time for a new home for "Be Still".

Monday, May 24, 2010

Running Out of Time - Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative

Healing Quilts is one of my passions. I have a lecture on how, as quilt artists, we can use our work to improve the lives of those dealing with disease.

One of my heroes is Ami Simms who is raising awareness and funds to battle Alzheimer's. I am sending this new piece to Ami today to support her efforts.

Here is my accompanying artist statement:
With this disease we are always racing against the clock.

“I hope Grandma will still recognize John when he graduates in two years.”

“I hope Amy gets married before Auntie is too confused to travel.”

“If only there would be a new treatment before Grandpa gets any worse”.

For Debbie, my friend, we are out of time. She needs to be moved now to Assisted Living. The cure did not come in time for her.

I chose the purple thread for Alzheimer’s awareness. The thread is fading as the time is running out. The grey fabrics symbolize the shadows of memories that are left.

Please check out Ami's website Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative.
And on behalf of Ami, I want to thank her volunteers who work behind the scenes. In the last week, I have connected with two: Peggy Mages and Kathy Kennedy Dennis. I know personally from my own healing quilt proejcts that even if you have a greatest vision, it takes a team to make it happen.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Galations 2:20

"I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me."

I made this piece for a beloved pastor who is leaving our church. It is mounted on black linen stretched on stretcher bars.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

New Work - "Shedding New Light on an Old Block"

My newest work is called "Shedding New Light on an Old Block" This is a 16" x 16" piece made for the Alliance of American Quilts challenge fund raiser to be auctioned off in the Fall of 2010. The challenge this year is called "New from Old". I am a sponsor and member of AAQ. You can read more about the organization here.

I hunted for old blocks in the Jinny Beyer book titled The Quilter’s Album of Patchwork Patterns. The star block I chose is called the 'Godey Design' and dates back to 1858.
To make the design my own, I used modern techniques to focus rays of light on the blocks, and then I embellished the quilt with silk floss and crystals. The star blocks are machine pieced and then appliqu├ęd to the background. The cotton fabrics are entirely designed by Jinny Beyer.

Friday, April 30, 2010

Sacred Threads 2011 Announcement

I have not had much time for blogging, Facebook, etc. My life has become busier than usual with Sacred Threads and my software company, Giving Back Technology, providing our call for entries /registration system for SAQA, QSDS and Quilts, Inc. But today I want to share my big news. Sacred Threads will be in Northern Virginia June 22 - July 4, 2011. It took some time to find the right venue. It will be held at my own church, Church of the Epiphany in Herndon, VA. It's convenient to Dulles Airport and it is 30 minutes outside DC. The call for entries will be open January 9 - March 9, 2011. So please be thinking about what sacred peices you want to enter. And mark your calendars for a trip to DC. July 4th is a wonderful time to be in the area.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

It's a Little Fishy

My piece for SAQA now has a name. "It's a Little Fishy". I asked my artist husband Mike to draw on the label. Using fabric pens, he created this little scene. Isn't it cute!

SAQA has posted my piece to the auction page. Check out all the fabulous pieces that have come in so far:

SAQA Benefit Auction

Saturday, March 13, 2010

SAQA Auction piece is done!

This little 12" x 12" quilt is for the SAQA reverse auction which will take place next fall. I have been making fish quilts lately. Must be because I am thinking about my beach house in California. Mike drew the fish for me. It's handy having a husband that can draw! I haven't named it yet. Any ideas?

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Signs of the Times - Part Three

My Uncle Sam piece is finished! Signs of the Times will be making its debut at the Mid-Atlantic Quilt Festival later this month.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Uncle Sam - Signs of the Times Progress - Part 2

My Signs of the Times piece is coming along. Check out the drawing my husband did from my recent post. Next step is to add the text for all the difficulties.

I am making great progress due to the crazy snow storm that hit our area. Otherwise I would be at the church today for an all day meeting.

While 3 feet snow is a lot and a bit of a hassle, I am happy to be in my studio today.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

I am proud to be a sponsor of an AAQ Fundraising event.

Here is the press release from AAQ:
The nonprofit Alliance for American Quilts will host two fundraising events in Washington, DC on Thursday, March 4.

The "Connected by Threads" events will celebrate quilts, quiltmakers and quilt history through the lens of two speakers, Dr. Carolyn L. Mazloomi and Le Rowell, both board members of The Alliance for American Quilts (AAQ). Mazloomi will speak at the Charles Sumner School Museum and Archives from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm including a tea reception, and Rowell will speak at a dinner and silent auction from 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. at the DACOR Bacon House. The events will benefit the nonprofit AAQ, a national organization that documents, preserves and shares the rich history of quilts and quiltmakers (www.AllianceforAmericanQuilts.org). Both Mazloomi and Rowell will be sharing quilts from their own collections and studies. "Connected by Threads" is sponsored by Lisa Ellis of the Sacred Threads Exhibit and maker of Art Call, the on-line artist registration, jurying and exhibit administration system, http://www.ellisquilts.com/, and the Rowell Family Charities. An individual ticket including both events is $85 for AAQ members and $100 for nonmembers. Individual event tickets are also available.

Read the full press release: http://archive.constantcontact.com/fs011/1101594196900/archive/1102956828989.html
Find complete information and online ticket sales: http://www.allianceforamericanquilts.org/support/events.php.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Signs of the Times. Work in Progress - Part 1

I am really blessed that my husband can draw. I am working on a piece for an exhibit called "Signs of the Times". I asked Mike to draw me an Uncle Sam skate boarding on a graph representing the Dow or unemployment while using a smart phone. He came back to me with this:

This is my second piece featuring Uncle Sam. My first was made in 2007 for Vintage Revisted and is called Trying to Keep the Balls in the Air:

I'll post more pictures of my new piece as it comes along.