Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Not This One

Yesterday I was thrilled to find out one of my ColorForm quilts was accepted into Quilt National 2015. But not this one- that's OK, we are enjoying having it hang in our dining room. This is my second trip to QN, and I am looking forward to seeing all the wonderful artwork at the opening in May.

Another piece of mine was accepted into a fiber art show, Multiplicities, at the Imago Gallery in Warren, RI, which opens October 17th, curated by Elin Noble.

Right now my studio has been emptied out as we will be getting new carpeting upstairs tomorrow. I have found some hand sewing that needs to be done that will keep me busy in the meantime. I am looking forward to getting it all reorganized at the end of the week.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

More experiments

Here is some of the fabric I have made recently, experimenting with flour paste as a resist, and also using soft scrub with bleach to disperse the dye. I have done it over several times, to get layers of interesting results. I am still working on how to use these fabrics: getting too busy with details is not in my nature, but using the whole cloth doesn't seem right yet either. I think I have to keep it in the back of my mind while I come up with ideas.

Some things happen during the process: that orange streak, where did it come from? I love the way it looks.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Totally new

I have been experimenting this summer, with some new techniques. In the first photo, I used paint and stamped using cardboard. The second photo shows paint applied to heavy canvas. I loved the texture of the fabric, and painted, stamped, and used various objects to apply paint to the fabric. Sometimes I sprayed water on it, and once even painted with coffee. I used several pieces of fabric that I would come back to and add more. I drew with pen and pencil, sewed the pieces together and did some machine quilting. In the last picture I used flour paste as a resist, and then used thickened dye to paint over it when I had dried. The circles were made using soft scrub.

It was fun and freeing to try something different. I let myself become a different person, in a way, because all those details can't be me! I had to figure out new rules as I went along, and am still trying to see what worked and what didn't on all the fabric I made. Here is a quote I ran across yesterday, when I was looking up improvisation in jazz:

(by Brian J. Kane)

Creating Within Context
"Freedom in jazz improvisation comes from understanding structure. When people listen to jazz, they often believe that the soloist is "doing whatever they want." In fact, as experienced improvisers will tell you, the soloist is rarely "doing whatever they want." An improvisational soloist is always following a complicated set of rules and being creative within the context of those rules."

I don't know a lot about jazz, and never learned to improvise in music, but I can see how improvising is not just playing anything, or it wouldn't make sense. It is interesting that when we make something in art that is improvised we are following some rule, whether we realize it or not.

Now I am back to solid dyed fabric, and it feels all new again.

Friday, May 30, 2014

ColorForm 70

This is ColorForm 70, 60"H x 70"W. I finished this in March, when I was first starting to focus on bigger work. Now when I look back on it, only a couple of months later, I feel more comfortable in bigger sizes. I can figure out how to start, and am finding that it is not that intimidating. Bigger work takes longer too, and is harder to photograph. And those long lines of quilting take forever!

Saturday, March 29, 2014

More Yellow

I have started working with yellow and have been figuring out ways to work with it-what goes with yellow? I found I have a lot of nice shades of yellow, and they go with lots of other colors.I like the dark, almost gold shades.  Here I used blues and grays, but have started a big piece using some dark orange/rust. I thought I didn't like yellow, but I just didn't know how to use it. And it has added some brightness to our dark, cloudy days lately. This is about 31"H x 34"W. And I have been trying out a different camera, which has turned out to be a big improvement!

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Desperate for Sunshine

It has been so nice out lately when the sun is out. Even though we have lots of snow left, I enjoy hearing it rushing down the storm sewers as it melts. When I go for a walk, there are big puddles of water to walk through on the sidewalks. I must have been desperate for sunshine when I made this one-I usually don't use much yellow! This one is 14"H x 19"W.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

One more, one less

 ColorForm 28, 16"H x 22"W

Here is one more from the ColorForm series, being offered this week for $150. I love the green at the bottom; the way the dye streaked gives an interesting texture to the shape. ColorForm 10 is spoken for, but there are 4 more to choose from

Monday, February 24, 2014

Add Two More

 ColorForm 41  17"H x 21.5"W

ColorForm 19  14.5"H x 20.5"W

It is nice and sunny today, but we will have a week of colder temperatures. We are looking forward to the end of February-spring can't be too far off once March begins. Here are two more small quilts I am offering at a pre-spring sale of $150  - that is 50% off the usual price. The sale prices will go through the end of February, so send me an email if you have any questions, or are interested in purchasing any of the 4 quilts!

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Ready for Spring sale!

 ColorForm 10, 14.5" x 20.5" SOLD
ColorForm 11, 19.5" x 23.5"
Here in Chicago we have had a tough winter. Almost 70" of snow so far, 4 school snow days, rain, ice, 50 mph wind gusts, and potholes. So spring can't come soon enough! I am going to have a pre-spring sale of several of my ColorForm quilts. These are approximately 18" x 24" and usually sell at gallery shops for $300. For the rest of February they will be $150  each. There will be 2 more listed tomorrow. Email me at, to arrange payment by check or Paypal, or to ask any questions.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Snow and Quilts at Dunlay's on the Square

It was a snowy drive into the city of Chicago today, as I went to Dunlay's on the Square Restaurant to hang some of my quilts. The restaurant is in the Logan Square neighborhood, that has historical boulevards, greystones and bungelow-style homes. There are quite a few wonderful restaurants in this neighborhood that we have enjoyed visiting, and one of them is Dunlay's on the Square-right across from the square the neighborhood is named after. It was fun to go into the restaurant before it was open, and see all the blank walls, and fill them with colorful art. There was room to hang 16 quilts. I tried to hang both large and small pieces, including 2 groups of smaller ColorForm quilts. I left some business we'll see what happens! In the meantime, I am grateful to Dunlay's for allowing me to share my art.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

A Beginning

The top picture is one of the last etc. pieces I have left, and I like the colors on this one. But it is only 8" x 10". The bottom picture shows the beginning process of making something bigger. I am using the colors of the etc. to make a new piece that will be 6-8 feet wide. Getting the colors to work is a long process, and it is interesting to see what changes need to be made to make something quite a bit bigger. You can only see part of it-there are 2 more sections to the left. Of course, I never have just the same colors to work with, so there are adjustments to be made. And I don't want to just copy what  I did before. It is hard to stand back to see what I am doing-but here is where a camera comes in handy. Just looking through the camera lens lets me see things a bit better. Other times, I walk out of the room, and then come back in. This is the fun part. Other times, it is just plain hard!

Monday, January 13, 2014

A New Year

I ended 2013 with a solo exhibit of my quilts-it was great to see some of the larger ones on a big wall, and a group of the small ColorForm pieces all together along a hallway. When they all came home, I decided to reorganize my closet space, and put each series together so I can find them easier. Since several of them have found new homes, I began the new year making some new, small ColorForm pieces. And now I am ready to work with some new ideas I have had, and and gear up for an exciting year ahead. In February I will be able to have a large group of quilts at a wonderful restaurant in the Logan Square neighborhood, in Chicago. In April, I have one of my large ColorForm pieces in a show in Dallas, TX in the Museum of Geometric Art. It is called "Quilts: the New Geometry".

 And so I think of a quote I saw recently, by Stephen Sondheim:
"White. A blank page or canvas. So many possibilities."

All images and works are property of Gail Baar, and cannot be used without her permission. ©