Friday, June 04, 2010

not machine readable

Meg initiated a project where we'd pick out some pictures, send them to another and then they'd weave something in response.

Rose in NZ sent me pictures of some scenes from her country, a barcode image and a menu card with foods listed by color. I must tell you that my initial reaction was to want to tear up the pictures. The barcode made me particularly furious. It reminded me of so many dull weaving shows I've been to that make me say to myself - why are these people doing this???

Weaving is so alive and yet there is such a staid aspect to so much of what's shown. So technically competent and yet so stuck in the mud. There, I've said it. Apologies to so many who continue to explore and innovate.

I was intrigued by the photo of nubbly gray rocks (?) - I was reminded of a yarn that I had around. (It's from Italy.) I still wanted to tear up the barcode, symbol of standardization and capitulation to the bottom line. Oh good, as usual, my anger was fueling my creativity :)

So anyway, frame loom, some handspun yarn from what's left in the drum carder (shown on spindle, at top), some Habu yarns, stripey ribbon - all just a bit off center. Shown in lots of orientations, cuz I like to mix it up. Windows to let light in. Added another piece at an end, woven free loom style. I see the photos reflected, I see my responses. Glad to have been able to consider all that I did while in process of working with it.

I sometimes surprise myself with the strong feelings I have about textiles, weaving, spinning. When I've been in an environment or with people who are open minded and expansive, I am happy that creativity will continue to flourish. When I run into people who forcefully assert that there is one way to do things, try to limit creativity and expression, try to exercise their power to have weaving/textile shows reflect their outlook, well, then I just want to shake free of all that...

Well, humor usually helps lighten my mood if I start to get too serious about an issue - start taking it too personally. So in that vein, I like this artist's (Scott Blake) take on the barcode - you can generate one for your own self here.
A long time ago, when I was slumming in the illustration/design world, a few people finally realized that even barcodes didn't have to be "standard". Some are here and here. But make no mistake, they're still barcodes - I am not fooled by their fluffy personality.

OK, I think I will go smash a loom now :)

Thanks, Rose and Meg.
::Saying a silent prayer that the formatting on this post even slightly resembles what I'm looking at before it's posted::

ETA: giving up on trying to make this look good for now.

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Blogger Meg in Nelson said...

I think it looks splendid, and for heaven's sake DON'T SMASH YOUR LOOM!!!

6/04/2010 3:36 PM  
Anonymous Trapunto said...

Hi Pics to Picks partner. Looking at your work it occurred to me that black and white stripes were also the pattern on old-fashioned prisoner suits. Glad your anger was productive!

6/06/2010 6:05 PM  
Blogger Meg in Nelson said...

And can I scream out loud, "I KNOW, I KNOW, I KNOW, how coming some weavers get to ruin it for others?????" But I had that hissy fit on my blog yesterday, so I'm trying to think positively, because if I truly advocate inclusiveness as much as I write about it, I should be able to accommodate all. But I know EXACTLY what you mean; I just can't seem to get away from, or prefer, to revolt on the conventional loom and cloth structure. Which, I know, puts me in the "Bo~ring" category in the eyes of more advanced/artistic/art-textile people.

Thank you so much for participating in the challenge. Sorry for the anger and frustration it caused, but I'm with Trapunto, I think I'm glad it challenged you.

6/06/2010 7:18 PM  
Anonymous Rose said...

Linda, I can only apologise for arousing your fury. I am still wondering what I could have put in that envelope that would have made you happy.

6/07/2010 7:12 AM  
Blogger linda said...

thanks, all, for your thoughts. i will respond shortly. i've been enjoying all the associated blog posts about projects.

i just wanted to respond to Rose with a quick note that no apology is necessary! your photos were absolutely perfect - your thought and care were evident. they made me furious and curious - a good combination for transcending one's limitations. many thanks again :)

6/07/2010 9:15 PM  
Blogger Dana and Daisy said...

i know what you mean about weavers who impress technique so much that it takes the fun and creativity out of it!

My pics to picks piece was anything but technically precise.

I like your piece and think the barcode must have been surprised to see what it became when it met you.

Have you seen the book by Sheila Hicks that has all the small frame weaving s she does while traveling? I think you would thoroughly enjoy it.

6/08/2010 10:30 AM  
Blogger linda said...

late responses, anyone?

hi all - i appreciate your comments!
meg - your work is always so interesting, and i absolutely adore your explorations. never ever would i even think of you and the word "boring" anywhere near each other. and you have exquisite taste, and your work is alive, so get outahere with the boring! thanks for starting the P2P project. i learned a lot from all of the participants.

danaanddaisy -
yes, thanks for mentioning sheila hicks. always such an inspiring force. i had the pleasure of hearing her speak with irma boom, the book designer, ( at yale university art gallery awhile back. looking forward to her show later this year, too!

and thank you again, trapunto and rose for being my partners!

8/17/2010 10:30 AM  
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