October 08, 2009

photos of my Women for Women project

here are a few more photo of my recently finished big project to follow up on the sneak peek I showed you in my last post. (They're not the best pics, but I was in a hurry when I took them- sorry!) The challenge was for all of us to use the same starting material, a color, and the biography of a specific person from the Women for Women website, and make any kind of art that we wanted. My color was Blue; my Women for Women survivor was Gloria, who lives in the country of Colombia. And this is the starting material: This is the "Before," and it frankly scared me a bit-- it's a department store torso, black plastic. (right here, she's enjoying some sunshine in our backyard- haha!!) So, the big question: what to do with her?!? Being a stamper, scrapper, and art journaler, I don't do much 3-dimensional work; I'm more comfortable with working on a much smaller scale, and working on flat surfaces. So, I decided to treat it like a 3-D journal page! I know I took in-process pics, but I can't find them on my computer, so you'll just have to imagine the process of layering on the paper, gesso, multiple colors of paint, stencils, and stamping-- when I got to the blue color (my color for the challenge), I kinda went a little overboard, so you can't see much of the underlying colors and textures unless you're up close.
I don't really know much about the country of Colombia, so I did some research at the library, which led me to the realization that I am really grateful to live in this country-- Colombia has been subjected to so much violence-- over 100 years of ongoing political unrest, killings, massacres... I can't imagine living under those conditions, let alone losing my husband to the violence and raising 4 children on my own, which is what Gloria has been through. This pic is the completed torso-- there is a lot of symbolism in the piece which no one might understand but me, but that's the way it is with journal pages, right?? The tree represents the country with its roots at the base, growing up towards the future. Since I use a lot of nature images, I decided on the bird/tree theme, and I love this particular quote from Emily Dickinson, so it had to go onto the piece. "Hope is the thing with feathers that perches in the soul, And sings the tune without the words, And never stops at all."
This is a closeup of the base-- the black painted design is my interpretation of an early Colombian textile pattern, and the blue/yellow flowers are from a traditional Colombian pottery design... the city with flames represents the changes and the violence that the country-- and Gloria-- have been thru in its/her life.
Here is a closeup of the top portion of the torso-- the top of the tree is the ongoing growth of the country, and Gloria's growth thru the Women for Women programs. The leaves (which are cut from a vintage atlas map of Colombia) have words on that represent the future- hope, believe, family, peace, etc. The "nest" is made from shredded cardstock, and the chipboard bird and hearts represent Gloria protecting and raising her four children. And, since it's a "journal page" I had to do some writing-- my feelings about Colombia, Gloria's struggles, and the good things that the Women for Women organization is doing all over the world... I can't wait to see it, and all the other torsos, on display at the gallery!!

6 comments:

Kelly Kilmer said...

Absolutely astounding!!!!!!!!!!! My jaw dropped when I saw it!!!

Mare said...

This is truly amazing! Awesome! Beautiful! I was working with Women for Women when they first came out and had a great experience with that program.I think your art and symbolism is fantastic. I've made a few paper dolls from images of women i support thru Kiva too. These women are so powerful...

thekathrynwheel said...

Wowee! This is amaaaaazing. Is it big? It looks like it is art on a big scale. Well done - fabulous. Kate

crimsoncat05 said...

thanks for your comments, guys!! I really wasn't too sure about this when I started working on it- I almost gave up on it, because I wasn't sure how my concept would turn out. And, because it IS big-- it's life size, so it's lots bigger than anything else I've done before.

Night Beader said...

I love this, just now posted my photo on my blog page. It is so nice to work with such talented women.

Beadily yours
Susan Feldkamp

freebird said...

Great piece of art. I imagine it looks even better in person. Yes, we are lucky to live where we do.