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.

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: