Reflecting on Hatch

In my last post, I briefly mentioned that I was gearing up to work on entries for the Hatch show and I’ve been MIA since. Hatch was this past weekend and it was fantastic. Now that it is over, I want to get back into the blogosphere. What better way to jump in than to share with you all of my wonderful experiences from this event?

What is Hatch?

Hatch was a creative-reuse art happening in Champaign, Illinois that was put on through the I.D.E.A. Store. There were 2 components to this show: the Art Exhibit and the Art Fair. Please see the official Hatch page for the full list of participants and their contact info! The exhibit is hosted at Indi-go Artist Co-op and will be on display through March 17, 2013. The fair was a one day event that featured over a dozen vendors.

The Art Fair – Highlights

I was only able to attend the art fair for the last hour, as I had to work most of the day. I wasn’t able to take it all in in such a short time. However, from what I saw, it was a good show. These were some of my favorites-

Phyllis Hughes
Phyllis was such an interesting person to talk to. I loved her crazy quilts and the Indian batik work she had brought with her from her time spent in India. She lived there for 2 years. I’m entirely jealous.
Sheila Daniels
Sheila makes jewelry from various odds and ends. Her work is exquisitely beautiful *and* she’s a fan of Doctor Who! You can’t go wrong!

This Image from Cheeky Magpie

Vintage Karma
Based in Tuscola, Vintage Karma sells handmade items from a variety of local artisans. Sadly, I didn’t take any photos here.

Karen Pritchett
Karen doesn’t have much of a web presence, but she does have a Facebook and is based in Columbia, Missouri. She makes really cute and upcycled outfits.

The Art Exhibit – Highlights

So much amazing artwork at this exhibit. Michelle Stitzlein came in from Ohio with a couple of pieces from her Moth series as the “Artist-in-Residence”. She held a slideshow Friday night during the opening reception and it was pretty awesome. She even went to one of the local elementary schools to work with kids on making murals with bottle caps.

Some of my favorite works on display:

Melissa Mitchell
Melissa, not only an artist, but one of the volunteers that helped to make the event happen, works with assemblage art. I’ve had the privilege of seeing her studio before. There isn’t much she creates that isn’t interesting. And wacky. And sometimes just very, very wrong (but in a good way)!

Cindy Blair Sampson
While she claims she disconnects herself from her artwork, she manages to create some very moving pieces. I found this work in particular to be very deep and moving. When you open the book, you find a key pressed into beeswax. As she said during the gallery talk, she feels the uterus to be the center of the universe. Also, the boob turns. Seriously. Interactive art!! +5 points!
Laura Wennstrom
I will never look at security envelopes the same way again. She created a “quilt” from envelopes. I have to admit, when I first saw this piece, I was unimpressed. However, after hearing her talk about her piece and looking closer at the patterns stamped into these envelopes that we routinely ignore, I have to give her credit. You’ve opened my eyes to something new, Laura. And now I want to make knitting charts that resemble security envelope designs.

Lawrence Agnello
While I didn’t really get the chance to meet him, I was impressed by his work. As the work holds it’s own, I give it to you with no further commentary.

Deborah Fell
Another artist I didn’t get the opportunity to talk to, but her artwork was too cool for me to overlook. I have no intelligent words or critiques here. I just simply find them interesting and captivating.

Fabric of Society and My First Juried Show

This show was also a very big deal for me, personally, as it was my very first juried show. I entered into the fair and 2 pieces for the exhibition. One of those pieces I stayed awake for over 35 hours working on. Only 1 piece was accepted (not the one I lost sleep over, haha). However, I feel thrilled that I even made it in at all… I heard that there were over a hundred applicants. I was able to participate in a gallery talk on Sunday, where artists were spotlighted and able to discuss their artwork and answer questions. I had a lot of fun with that. I even managed to sell my artwork that afternoon, and in talking to the people who purchased my artwork, I am overjoyed that it will be going to someone that truly appreciates and *gets* the concept.
I suppose you’d like to see the piece? I call it “Fabric of Society”. I’d shown it previously at 3T: Third Thursday Art Show, and I have to credit Adam Perschbacher for the initial photos that I used for the application. I honestly think his photos made a difference in getting accepted.
FabricofSociety FabricofSoceity1

This is me trying to sound smart while talking about my artwork.

This is me trying to sound smart while talking about my artwork.

I spun strips of newspaper into yarn and knitted this placard, which, when looked at closely, reads “TRUTH?”
The artist’s statement underneath reads:

The News. We count on reporters to give us facts and report the truth. Based on this information we make a myriad of important decisions… some personal, some public and having important effects upon others. We’d like to believe that we can trust the journalists and reporters to be objective, most of us know better. We are, after all, only human and so we are prone to biases. Whether intentional or not, what we claim to be factual and true ends up twisted and distorted, spun to serve some purpose or other. Like fiber spun into yarn. It is these twisted truths that are knitted up, unrecognizable, to create this fabric of society. And we wrap ourselves up in it, like a blanket, for comfort and warmth. But what is truth? Could we Recognize it if we saw it? Can you?

Presto Change-o! Pants Become a Purse: Part 2

I know that a lot of time has passed between my last posting and this one. Part of that was dealing with the holidays and part has been trying to bust my butt to get other projects done to apply for Hatch, as the deadline is in just a few days. What is Hatch? In short, it is a creative re-use art fest that will be taking place this March in Champaign, IL. For more information, please see The Official Hatch Info Page.

Since last I posted I have completed the purse. I’ve been working on it here and there for the past month and actually just finished it off about 20 minutes prior to writing this entry. If you haven’t already read parts 1 and 2, check them out here: Part 1 & Part 2.
When I left off last time, I had transferred the Buddha image onto the purse but had not yet begun embroidery. For those of you that follow the Facebook page, you’ve already had a sneak peak at the progress on the embroidery. If you haven’t, well, do you see that little Facebook thing to the side? You should click the “Like” button. I’ll wait for you.  …  Done? Good. Here’s how Buddha turned out: OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

After Buddha was done, I began work on the lining. I used an old cotton bed sheet I picked up from a second hand store  awhile back. I added an inside pocket on one side of the lining, which proved to be a bit of a pain. If I make anymore, I’m using a zippered opening. I also added two more smaller pockets to what should have been the back pockets of the pants. I hate how so many women’s pants have fake decoration pockets. Maybe we might actually want to put something back there, huh? Maybe it’s just me. I’d also like to see more women’s pants with functional cargo pockets. Before I started carrying a purse regularly (which became a necessity for transporting yarn), I used to wear men’s cargo jeans almost exclusively (I’ve actually discussed this before).  Anyhow, here’s some pictures. First the back pockets:


Now, the lining:


The lining actually turned out to be not as deep as the purse itself, partly because I merely estimated the dimensions while laying the purse flat on the floor. I can always go back in and fix it later, but it’s good enough for now. I used part of the pant legs to make the handles. I made two. I cut 2 strips that were about 3 in x 30 in. Striped material is quite nice for nice straight lines.

The pants themselves had 4 nice belt loops that were more or less evenly spaced and ended up being the same width as the finished straps, so it was only natural for me to feed them into each other. Although I play hell feeding that much fabric through my machine, I think it came out quite nice.