Thursday, 21 September 2017


Fragments hiding behind the Muses

The gallery in Auxerre really wanted to show the Muses, but I also wanted to make something new for the occasion. Related but slightly different.  This is the new series - Fragments. There are 7 of them which can be viewed together or separately.
The seven pieces pieced and painted
They started with similar techniques to the Muses - lots of piecing of small bits of fabric, which were then over painted to bring some unity to the background.
As I've been thinking lots about stones, rocks and ancient sculptures I decided to add some rock piles using Markal paint sticks.
Adding the Markal

Testing out colours of sari silk
The figures were added using sari strips which were over painted with Brusho. Originally they looked a bit like scene of the crime outlines as they were so stark!   The figures have changed shape slightly as I am continually redrawing them to see how far I can simplify them whilst still retaining the idea of the human form.
Before the final stitches were added
Finally I stitched the patterns on top. These are patterns which would have decorated some of the goddesses when they were made and gaudily painted. I drew a guide pattern to get a sense of the flow.  Following advice, I traced the pattern onto Golden something paper as it is meant to be really easy to remove. It may be the easiest paper to remove, but I'm glad I put it on the back as it is still hard to remove every last piece, especially from small shapes.

Adding the stitch
I don't have a clear photo of all 7 in a row but hopefully these give you an idea of what they look like. 

Side view of five of them

Friday, 15 September 2017

Exhibition in Auxerre, France

Unsung Muses at Galerie de la Place, Auxerre

The Muses are on their travels again. This time, they are in Galerie de la Place, Auxerre, France until 30 September. 
Unsung Muses

It is a lovely gallery with a nice friendly feel to it that suits the Muses perfectly. 

Going to hang the work was my first time in Auxerre and it is a beautiful and old town in Burgundy, with lots of half timbered houses and cobbled streets. A great place to while away a day. 

The exhibition continues until 30 September.
Some lovely old buildings

More old buildings - I really liked the street lamps too.
This window, in the Cathedral opposite the Gallery reminded me of some of the shapes I use in my Muse related works.

The exhibition poster outside the Gallery

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Hunterian Museum, Glasgow


Although I have lived in or near Glasgow most of my life, until recently I had never visited the Hunterian Museum at the University, despite having even been a student there for four years.  I think it was due to my misconception that it was just bits of pickled bodies in jars as Hunter, who started the collection was a medical man.  There are bits of pickled bodies, but not many - most of them are in the Anatomy Museum and I am still very unlikely to venture there!
Hunterian Museum
So I was really pleased to discover the actual contents - which are fascinating - the largest collection of Roman things I've seen in Scotland, relating to the Antonine Wall, stones, fossils, dinosaurs, mummies, pottery - in other words a dream museum for me!  Having made this discovery, last week I took the Diploma students there for a research trip and this week it is the turn of some of the Certificate students.  These are just some snaps I took there.  
From Roman times

For an idea of how to get the most out of a museum research visit, a friend told me the other day she had found my post from two years ago really handy when she went to a new large place as it gave her something to focus on:

Torso of a Roman statue

General View

Surface of an old rock

A special exhibition of sketchbooks from a joint research project

More of the sketchbook pages by Rachel Duckhouse

North American Carved Fish

Detail of an old map

Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Flowers and Trees in the Botanic Garden

After visiting the Freewheeling exhibition the other weekend, we wandered on to the Botanic Garden in Edinburgh.  It was gloriously sunny, which made it great for photography.  So here are some gorgeous flower and tree photos.  I'm not a gardener or botanist, so I have no idea what they are, I just enjoy the colours, textures and shapes.

I take lots of photos of flowers and trees but they rarely make it into my artwork - one day they will feed through as inspiration, but I still have to get the rocks and stones out of my system first!

Monday, 8 May 2017

Freewheeling Quilt Exhibition in Edinburgh

Yesterday we spent the day in Edinburgh so I could visit Freewheeling's latest exhibition at the Dundas Gallery on Dundas St.
It was great to see their work in a gallery setting and there was a lovely variety of work on show.
The exhibition continues to Thursday 11 May 2017 - well worth a visit if you can make it.    Otherwise you can find out more about the group here:

Sheila and Dorothy 'on duty'

Friday, 5 May 2017

Quilt Heritage at the Knitting & Stitching Show

Last weekend I had the pleasure of being on the Quilters' Guild exhibition stand at the Knitting & Stitching Show in Edinburgh.  It was lovely being able to spend time amongst such beautiful old quilts and seeing visitors' reactions to them.  As I was there on the Sunday, I helped pack them all away, which meant I was able to look at the backs too and get a sense of how they felt (although definitely through white gloves to help conserve the quilts!).  These are some photos of the quilts.

As well as the older quilts, there was fab work by Effie Galletly and the 62 Group amongst others.  The show felt more substantial than last year and it was great to visit and be a part of it.
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