Self-Study 2.0: the quilter

At RealJob, July 1, 2020 is the first day of a new month, a new fiscal year, and a new academic year. It’s usually about the time that summer break starts to feel like it’s dwindling away, but this year we hit that point weeks ago; we are starting much earlier and risking our lives…but I digress.

Self Study 2.0

On this day I begin earning fewer dollars for my efforts…another COVID-19 digression…same job, fewer dollars. But I begin the same job with a new title (an endowed chair). To me the title is a surprising kindness and an ego boost that won’t go to my head. Eyes on the prize, friends. We still have lots to learn and ever more to achieve.

Self Study 2.0

And a new year as a quilter. Here’s a new quilt in a new series (not sure when I’ll get the rest of the series going though). And the ideas I had in mind a year ago when I proposed making it for a museum exhibition:

A patchwork of a portrait of myself as a quilter, this is a reflection on a black interloper into the quilt world, which is a space policed by white women who often act as gatekeepers and
try to keep me out.

I was, ahem, in a different head-space then, although I still agree with the sentiments.

But I find myself worthier now.

Self Study 2.0

I am here.

Untitled
I am here.

I am here.

chatting about the week I had.

From my kitchen last week, I did a brief interview with Program Director Davana Robedee at the Schweinfurth Art Center.

You can listen to other interviews with fiber artists over here.

Have a great week!

holding on

Back in March, my world got flipped and I had to get over my deep instinct for inertia in the basics of my life and just let everything join into a realm of chaos for a little while. I regained some control over parts of RealJob and just let the rest continue to swirl.

COVIDtimes

During the COVID-19 stay-at-home, I found great solace in making some precision-pieced stars. The rhythm, the tedium, the repetition all worked together to let my mind wander and work through the puzzle of this new normal.

And then Breonna Taylor was shot in her home in Louisville, Ky, and Ahmaud Arbery was lynched in Georgia for just taking a jog in his neighborhood, and while birding in Central Park Christian Cooper was falsely accused of harassment by a white woman, and then for allegedly floating a counterfeit $20-bill (not a capital crime) George Floyd was killed in broad daylight in a chokehold by a police officer in Minneapolis as other officers looked on.

This list goes on: Tony McDade in Tallahassee, David McAtee in Louisville, KY, and on and on and on.

And the world has caught on fire. Finally.

And so it’s been quite the year so far. It’s not the year we wanted, but–strangely–it’s the year we need.

After the mass murder of nine worshippers at a church in Charleston, SC in 2015, Claudia Rankine wrote an op-ed, The Condition of Black Life is One of Mourning and it seems like a nice starting point for an exploration. Many are starting their education about our lives because of our deaths, so it’s apt.

Start to peel that onion.

COVIDtimes

Do not ask me for resources. Don’t be that person. Use your noggin and your fingers to search on google about: lynching, white supremacy, racism, white fragility, intersectionality, capitalism, slavery, poverty, the 13th amendment, prisons, discrimination in education, income inequality,…you know, life.

I’ll be back.

xo, c

what to say?

It’s inordinately difficult to know what to say today, one week after George Floyd was killed in broad daylight in Minneapolis, sparking off a week of peaceful protests (in 111 cities) some of which were hijacked and turned into riots by extremists. Oh, and let’s not forget that this is all amid the COVID-19 global pandemic.

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One can get disproportionately enrapt with just one of the many issues at hand and come away with a shallow and/or distorted understanding of what, exactly, is happening here and now. We all, myself included, need to take some slow breaths (if we can) and slow down to focus. There’s far too much happening to us at once.

You need to do something. You must do something, no matter who you are.

Do not ask me what to do.

Figure it out.

I’ll be back.

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Consider joining me for a discussion of textiles and social justice, hosted by the Vermont MQG; admission is $10 and once my fee is paid, all further proceeds are being donated to the Social Justice Sewing Academy, Black Lives Matter Vermont, and Third Street Alliance (a shelter in Easton, PA). Info and registration here.