I have an exhibit on display at Bay Quilts during the month of March. The title of the show is Busy Hands Ground the Spirit. This is a topic that is very dear to my heart right now. Over the past year, I have realized that keeping my hands busy is key to my sanity in this crazy moment of time we are going through. With each stitch, I am given a choice. Do I stab because I am frustrated or nervous? Or do I gently poke at the fabric, because I am feeling melancholy or perhaps at ease in the moment? Pulling the thread through reminds me of a deep breath. A moment in time to appreciate what I am doing. All of this has been my "Stitch Therapy" over the past year. I practice my therapy every evening, and sometimes during the day, if needed. I preach it to my friends and students. I have even done a few online lectures about it. So this was an obvious choice for me when choosing the topic of my current exhibit.
It is a little weird to exhibit during a pandemic, but Bay Quilts has made the whole process a lovely experience. Thank you Bay Quilts! The month is almost over, but we are finishing off the exhibit with a Live Video Chat on Sunday, March 28 at 1:00pm. You can link to the chat through their Instagram feed at https://www.instagram.com/sfbayquilts/
If you weren't able to see the quilts in person, here is an overview of the exhibit. You can read more about each of the quilts by clicking on them individually.
I am convinced that my creative energy flows through my stubby, needle pricked fingertips. Whether I am stitching fabric on a sewing machine, or hand stitching with needle and thread, I have learned that keeping my hands busy allows me to think, to ponder, and imagine. It’s where the ideas begin to emerge, and questions find their answers. It grounds me, so that I can get to the good stuff, my inner voice, and the creative flow. The quilts in this exhibit are examples of listening to that inner voice. Some were created by machine, some by hand, and many are a combination of both. Each began without any particular plan, but developed naturally as I busied my hands with fabric and stitch.
Stitch is my mantra. Working with color and print, creating textures, shape and line, then crumpling, twisting and layering all of these with stitch is my happy place. “Stitch” has become my mantra over the past few years. It has cured boredom, calmed anxiety, but most of all, has allowed me to ponder the “what if’s” that pop into my head as I stitch. If I become bored with a simple running stitch, I change to another. If I run out of green thread, I change to hot pink. This is where the magic happens - in the moment. This is where I step out of what is expected and into that creative flow. And when the quilt is finished, I am pleased that my stitches give my work something that only my hand can create. It is a signature for my creative spirit. It is an opportunity to listen and react to my inner voice. This voice is mine and mine alone.
I hope you enjoy the exhibit.