Gail Garber Designs
gail@gailgarber.com
http://GailGarber.com/

Logo: Gail Garber Designs

Gail's Quilting Blog

Artwork by Others

Shibori by Jean Carbon

Shibori Silk Skirt

Shibori Silk Skirt

While Jean’s scarves were stunning, her large pieces were unbelievable.  This turquoise and black silk wrap is just one of the pieces that Jean creates using ancient shibori techniques.

Jean's Work Area

Jean’s Work Area

Jean took us back into her dye studio and talked to us about her techniques.  She not only works in silks, but also in other textiles.

Ikat Style Dying

Ikat Style Dyed Cottons and Linens

Above is a sample of other types of dying techniques that Jean uses.  These are often made into garments and also a more rustic style of scarf.

Silk Shibori in Red and Black

Silk Shibori in Red and Black

Each piece is a work of art.

Silk Shibori in White and Black

Silk Shibori in White and Black

Although I’ve only shown images of Jean’s silk work, she also creates garments in velvets and other techniques.  This will be an unforgettable stop on our tour next April.  I know that you will enjoy her work and her studio as much as I did.

 

 

 

 

Add your comment!

Raglan on the Tasman Sea

Tasman Sea - As Viewed from Jean Carbon's Studio

Tasman Sea – As Viewed from Jean Carbon’s Studio

Next, Marion and I headed south and west from Hamilton to the small art community of Raglan, located on the western edge of North Island on the Tasman Sea.  Our destination was the studio of Jean Carbon.  Jean is a popular artist who sells her shibori creations in boutiques throughout the country and this is the view from her studio.

Bronze in Shibori

Bronze in Shibori

I first saw Jean’s work in a little shop in Queenstown on South Island.  I marveled at the rich colors of the tightly folded scarves in the shop. The scarves virtually radiated saturated color.  Oh, how I wanted to take one home with me.  But here in New Mexico, my home, folks just don’t wear scarves.  Dang!

Jean says that fiber is her passion!  Her work includes sumptuous silks that are hand-dyed using ancient techniques to create garments and wraps that are timeless, elegant and totally original!

Looking at Jean's Scarves

Looking at Jean’s Scarves

Here, you can see how tightly rolled each scarf is, with only a small hint of the wonder that lies within.  Watch as it unfolds.

The Blue and Purple Scarf

The Blue and Purple Scarf

Simply amazing!  The model is the French girlfriend of Jean’s son, possibly a young woman born to be a model.

The Pink Scarf

The Pink Scarf

The shibori design unfolds as the scarf is opened.

Draping

Draping

When draped around the neck, the colors virtually radiate, nicely framing the face.  Jean’s Studio will be one of the stops on the Quilting and Textile Tour of New Zealand next April.

Stay tuned for more of Jean’s work in the next post.

 

 

 

Add your comment!

The Comfort of Stitch – Revisited

The Comfort of Stitch by Lee-ann Newton

The Comfort of Stitch by Lee-ann Newton

Shortly after I posted this image on my blog, I heard from my friend Marion Manson, who had posted a similar photo and story on her blog.  She was contacted by Lee-ann who gave her a link to her own blog that has the full, and fascinating story of how this quilt came to be.  It’s worth a read!  What a wonderful quilt with an equally interesting story.   When her page opens, just scroll down to read the entire story.

Add your comment!

My Place by Fibres Unlimited – Taupo Museum

My Place Exhibit Fibres Unlimited

My Place Exhibit
Fibres Unlimited

Fibres Unlimited is group that formed with the goal of encouraging each other in creativity.  Group members have very different strengths that made this project particularly rewarding.  Joan Bright, a founding member of the group, now age 91, is no longer able to stitch but has inspired several pieces by sharing her stash when she was forced to downsize.  Group members worked collaboratively over two years on this impressive exhibit, stretching their creativity as they worked together using techniques with which they were unfamiliar.

Fibres Unlimited dedicated “My Place” to the memory of Margaret Elizabeth Scott 1932-2013.  Margaret was a superb needlewoman who was generous with her knowledge.  In exhibitions, her quilts were stunning in their conception and immaculate in presentation.

The text below each of the quilts shown here are the words of their makers. 

Orakei Korako by Aletta Lamprecht and Robyn Tinkler

Orakei Korako by Aletta Lamprecht and Robyn Tinkler

Orakei Korako tells of the thermal activity present there.  It produces stunning, ever changing color schemes.

The quilts in this exhibit particularly spoke to me as they shared stories of their New Zealand, my other favorite country.  It was evident through these quilts that the women of Fibres Unlimited have great love for their country and for each other.

My Country by Barbara McQuarrie and Leigh Motion

My Country by Barbara McQuarrie and Leigh Motion

“When I was working on this piece, the London Olympic Games were on and New Zealand soldiers were being killed and injured in Afghanistan.  I felt very blessed to have been born in this country.

Forest Magic by Aletta Lamprecht and Pene Williamson

Forest Magic by Aletta Lamprecht and Pene Williamson

In Forest Magic, the roots of a tree that claws on bare rocks are supporting its magnificent tree trunk in one of the forests where I was tramping with a school group.  Piecing, discharging and quilting by Aletta Lamprecht.  Felting, hand embroidery and hand quilting by Pene Williamson.

Boat Sheds at Hot Water Beach by Leigh Motion and Aletta Lamprecht

Boat Sheds at Hot Water Beach by Leigh Motion and Aletta Lamprecht

As a child, there were many boatsheds near my place on the river.  Purpose-built, no frills and usually slightly derelict. Aletta and I often walk, run or ride past these lakeside boat sheds.

Deep in the Hills by Barbara McQuarrie

Deep in the Hills by Barbara McQuarrie

Deep in the hills of the Paparoa Range lie the bodies of twenty nine men.

On Friday 19 November 2010 at 3:45pm there was an underground explosion at the Pike River coal mine. Twenty-nine men lost their lives, and their bodies have not been recovered.

The remainder of the quilts will be featured in the next post.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Add your comment!

37 Sketches: Small Quilt Studies by Gwen Marston

The Taupo Museum also featured an exhibit by Gwen Marston who has been quilting for three decades resulting in 440 small quilts.  Gwen says that making small pieces allows her to experiment with many more artistic and technical ideas.  She also believes that she feels that it helped her develop her own aesthetic more than anything else.  In 2010, Gwen began a new series of quilts that she calls, “Small Studies”.  Her intent was to use the ideas of “the sketch” as way to push herself into creating as many different compositions as possible without repeating herself.

Red Square II 2007

Red Square II (c) 2007

The brilliant, almost Amish colors in Gwen’s quilts makes them nearly leap off the wall.  With an irrepressible eye for graphic design, each of these intricately pieced quilts is stunning, particularly so when hanging together in the large room of the Taupo Museum.

Minimal Grid (c) 2013  Small Study # 56

Minimal Grid (c) 2013
Small Study # 56

The combination of large and small quilts with the same colors and similar shapes, also presents a powerful statement.

Medallion with Three Triangles  (c) 2012 Small Study #30

Medallion with Three Triangles (c) 2012
Small Study #30

Gwen thinks of the small quilt in the above image as her “tribal style”.  When something particularly pleases her, she immediately uses it as a study for a larger piece.  This is what happened with these two quilts.  She doesn’t try to make the larger work identical to the sketch, but uses the colors and design elements worked out in the small study sketch.

Small Studies #1, #2, and #3, (c) 2010

Small Studies #1, #2, and #3, (c) 2010

Gwen developed a strong appreciation for strong, saturated colors from looking at Amish quilt.  Each of these studies were created in 2010.  37 Sketches was a powerful exhibit of quilts reminiscent of an American style of quilting more so than those often created by New Zealanders.  It was one of the four different quilt exhibits at the Taupo Museum during Symposium 2013.

 

 

 

Add your comment!

Taupo – Around Town

Schoolyard Art

Schoolyard Art

With Symposium 2013 at an end, I said farewell to new friends as well as long-time friends.   My next few days would be spent with Marion Manson, the woman who is responsible for my love affair with New Zealand.  Back in about 1990, Marion purchased a pattern from me.  It was my first overseas order and I was so excited that I wrote to her.  She wrote back and soon we were dedicated pen pals — this was in the days before internet!  Marion was on the organizing committee of Symposium 1997, held in Hamilton and I was invited to teach there, my first New Zealand Symposium.

Taupo Museum with Marion

Taupo Museum with Marion

Marion works in natural dyes on different fibers and it active in the art community throughout New Zealand.  First on our agenda for the day was the Taupo Museum, except that some shop windows beckoned along the way.  In honor of the Symposium many of the shop windows were beautifully decorated.

Kiwi in Store Window

Kiwi in Store Window

Without a doubt, this was my favorite shop window!  And, I left a goodly amount of cash with them for safe keeping!  I walked out sporting a new jacket.

Weaving at Woolshed

Weaving at Woolshed

We found this lovely hand woven piece at the Woolshed, where many of the woolens and possum-down items were on sale.  I left some more cash there!  It was beginning to look like an expensive day.

Flowers everywhere Taupo

Flowers everywhere Taupo

But, we soon returned to our mission of the day – the many special quilt exhibits at the Taupo Museum.

Red Heart

Red Heart

The first exhibit that caught my eye was right inside the front door.  Covering two free standing panels were row upon row of 12″ square little quilts, all done in shades of RED!  The Red quilts at Taupo were a challenge given by Aotearoa Quilters. The winner was the lovely gerbera by Sonya Prchal. There were 137 entries from all around New Zealand. The quilts were all for sale, cash and carry, and the remainder will be shown at the Stitches and Craft show in Hamilton 7th/8th September.  Many thanks to Janet Ryan, of New Zealand for the above information.  Here are a few of my favorites.

Red Flower

Red Gerbera Daisy by Sonya Prchal, Grand Prize Winner

Red Houses

Red Houses

Red Koru

Red Koru

Red Ribbon

Red Ribbon

If anyone knows the names of the quiltmakers of the other quilts, and their stories behind these little quilts, I would sure appreciate that information.  Back outside, another shade of red caught my eye. . .

Sparrows and apple

Sparrows and Apple

Laying in the wet parking lot, amid the parked vehicles, someone had discarded an apple core.  It seemed to be just the meal the local sparrows hungered for.  Although all looks peaceful in this image . . .

Sparrow Fight

Sparrow Fight

Guarding one’s feast might just make winter survival a little easier.  Marion also was attracted by the outdoor colors.

Marion Picking Leaves

Marion Picking Leaves

She began picking winter leaves for her dye pots at home.  Before long,

Marion's Leaves

Marion’s Leaf Bouquet

she had collected a lovely little leaf bouquet.  And through it all, in the mist of the winter day,

Magnolia flower

Magnolia flower

the magnolias bloomed wildly.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Add your comment!

Taupo – Around Town

Looking onto Lake Taupo Artw

Looking onto Lake Taupo Art

It doesn’t take long to discover that Taupo boasts a burgeoning art community, well supported in their local community.  Although I was did not capture the specifics of this sculpture that looks out onto Lake Taupo, its majesty sets the tone for art in the downtown area.

Heartland by Brett Taylor, 2011

Heartland by Brett Taylor, 2011

During the course of my meanderings, I found many of the sculptures highlighted in the “Walk the Sculptures of Taupo” brochure.  Much of the art has been funded by the Taupo Sculpture Trust that began in 2008, by a small group of art lovers who decided the time was right to add some dynamic shape and culture to the Lake Taupo Region.  The Trust is now registered as a New Zealand Charitable Trust.

In the above piece, Heartland, the red heart of North Island is set under a matai structure with bronze strap as a tribute to the early New Zealand settlers.

Birds and Stone of Te Arawa by Graham Cooper, 1993

Birds and Stone of Te Arawa by Graham Cooper, 1993

This Sculpture symbolizes the gifts of bird and stones of the Te Arawa voyagers.  The Tuwharetoa people left birds and stones on the shore of Lake Taupo to protect and guide all followers.

This sculpture, created from stainless steel and glass, represents a long wave length surface that travels long distances across a body of water.  It embodies a light hearted sense of fun as well as an environmental message.

 

Taupo-nui-a-Tia, the Great Cloak of Tia, by Lynden Over, 2009

Taupo-nui-a-Tia, the Great Cloak of Tia, by Lynden Over, 2009

My friends, Melissa and Diane, posed in front of this piece which is the first sculpture commissioned by the Taupo Sculpture Trust.  It is set on the plinth of local volcanic rhyolite rock and symbolizes the two sides of the legendary cloak.  The glass feather depict the lake, sky, river, and volcanic Earth.

Sitting in the Donut

Sitting in the Donut

In addition to the art listed in the brochure, we also found other art, scattered throughout the downtown area.  My friend Marion Manson snapped this photo right outside the Replete, the cafe where we ate lunch!  And, a delicious lunch it was too.

Koru in the Shoestore

Koru in the Shoe Store

Even the flooring was artistic, as evidenced by this stone Koru that was the flooring in the local sport shoe shop.  Art is everywhere in Taupo!  Check it out next time you visit.

 

 

 

Add your comment!

Wildlife Quilts

Quilts that feature wildlife are among my most favorite.  So, I saved this selection for today.

Viewing the Bay of Islands by Sonya Prchal

Viewing the Bay of Islands by Sonya Prchal

In this delightful quilt by Sonya Prchal, a Tui looks out onto the Bay of Islands.  Tuis are the common garden birds that are easy to find in urban and rural areas of New Zealand.  They are distinctive with their glossy black feathers with the white (cottonball) puffy feathers at the throat and their song.

Tui at Dawn by Charlotte Scott

Tui at Dawn by Charlotte Scott

Tui at Dawn by Charlotte Scott is a particularly effective use of transparency in a quilt.  The judges liked it too as it was a multiple award winner at the show.  New Zealand’s wildlife evolved without mammals (except for two bat species) leading to a unique set of birds, many of which are flightless or poorly flighted.  The introduction of mammals to this island nation has had a devastating impact on the bird life.  The Department of Conservation spends millions each year in an attempt to control introduced possums, stoats, rats, mice and other mammalian predators.

Fanciful Feathers by Rosemary Rush

Fanciful Feathers by Rosemary Rush

Of course, quilter’s imaginations are fertile ground indeed!  Fanciful Feathers epitomizes the wonder that the mind can create.  With it’s bold use of color, this imaginary bird was a merit award winner.

Theres Plenty More Where That Came From by Natalie Murdoch

There’s Plenty More Where That Came From by Natalie Murdoch

New Zealand is famous for its fisheries and attracts sport fishermen worldwide, and Taupo is one of the primary areas to practice this sport.  At the Symposium exhibit, I also found two awesome quilts that celebrate the underwater wildlife so prevalent in the streams and lakes nearby.

Misty Morn by Sheryl Meech

Misty Morn by Sheryl Meech

Misty Morn by Sheryl Meech celebrates all that is beautiful about New Zealand, including the fish.  If you look closely at this first place award winning quilt, you will see an abundance of shadow fish in the water. If you are in the area be sure to check out the Tongariro National Trout Center.

Taupo Trout

Taupo Trout

It’s easy to enjoy the outdoor artwork of Taupo, made possible by the Taupo Sculpture Trust.  In fact all things Taupo are well worth a visit!

I am off to Houston to teach for the Greater Houston Area Quilter’s Guild, so there won’t be another post for a couple of days!  There’s plenty more to see about New Zealand!

 

 

 

Add your comment!

Page 7 of 8« First...45678