Friday, May 15, 2015

Dropped Stitch

Some months ago, I received an invitation to participate in an exhibition to be presented at Neddies Harbour Inn in Norris Point in Gros Morne.  Titled, Dropped Stitch, it was to be something of a Salon de Refusés.  The story of how such a thing came to be is, perhaps, beyond the scope of this blog.  The important thing is, I wanted in.  

I wanted in but this piece - my piece - is not currently on view in the exhibition, which by the way, opens tonight.  If you find yourself standing outside the Neddies Harbour Inn, please go inside and see the show!  It is, by all accounts, wonderful.

This piece - my piece - is still en route.  When I agreed to be part of the Refusés, I had all sorts of ideas.  So many ideas that I found it difficult to choose which one.  Meanwhile, the clock was ticking.  Then, I made this piece, or an earlier incarnation of this piece.  It was just kinda meh if you know what I mean. Meanwhile, the clock was ticking.  Shawn, one of the co-organizers of the exhibition, emailed me to inquire about what I was submitting and to confirm my participation.  And that is when I told a lie.  I told her it was in the mail.  I thought that I would send the earlier incarnation of this piece and I would go, right then, to pack it up and mail it.  So my lie would be a very small lie - a matter of minutes or maybe an hour.  

But the meh-ness of the piece was too much.  It kinda sucked.  I didn't want to send such a sucky piece so I held onto it and waited for it to tell me how to improve it.  Or for the piece that I was supposed to send to present itself to me.  As I write this, I am thinking that this story could be seen as lying to protect my artistic integrity but that might be pushing it.  Mostly I was just embarrassed that I only had this rather sucky piece and it seemed better to not be included at all than to be represented by this thing.

Meanwhile the clock was ticking.  Finally, weeks - yes, weeks! - after I told Shawn that the piece was in the mail, I realized what had to be done.  I painted the whole thing with ink, then I re-embroidered the words.  Then I painted only the words with ink.  Then I re-embroidered the words again.  And so, like this, several more times.  And then I realized the back was much more intriguing than the front. It was saying the thing that I was trying to say - Total Trust.

I made a backing for the front just in case someone would be tempted to show that side, which was now the wrong side.  And, by gum, I mailed that thing!

Dear Shawn,  I am very sorry that I lied about my piece being in the mail but I am happy that I didn't mail it.  It is much better now.  If you don't want to include it in the show, I understand.  Liars must take the consequences of their actions.  I am excited about the show, whether or not my work is part of it.   
Love, Robyn

Viva les Refusés!

Total Trust, 2015, ink and embroidery on found textile, 25 x 20 cm
Dropped Stitch will be on view at Neddies Harbour Inn through the summer and until the FibreArts NL conference ends in early October.  Please see it if you can!  It features works by ten western Newfoundland artists including Jackie Alcock, Shannon Ann Coyle, Niki T Hollahan, Barb Hunt, Robyn Love (maybe!), Urve ManuelShawn O'HaganJoan Payne, Brenda Stratton and Molly White.

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