Thursday, August 23, 2012

Blurbs

I'm going to post the next few posts in a random, somewhat illogical, order, in which I can get my head around the subject concerned.

Strands members have been working on blurbs because we want to get print-related tasks out of the way, and at our last meeting on Monday we worked on our personal profiles. The problem is, for me, exhibitions are about the work. I can wax lyrical about each piece until the cows come home and leave again, but about me, I want to say as little as possible because I feel it takes the energy away from my work. (Even though I love to read other artists' bio. Encouraged/prodded on by others, I finally managed to finish drafts for my print-related blurbs. As regards words, I've the scripts for the Opening night and the Floor Talk to go.

Artist's Statement, which will go into the catalogue with one or two photos of my work:
“I weave cloth on looms.”

Personal Profile or Bio, which will be printed on paper and included in our collective book piece, facing my Self-Portrait piece. I'm still not crazy about the text but I don't want to spend more time on this to tell the truth:
"I grew up watching my mother knit, sew and embroider while listening to her chant how much she longed to weave. The view that weaving is the ultimate textile work was thus ingrained in me. She started weaving when she was 60, and I followed a few years after her.

"The simplicity of weaving suits my personality. The vertical warp threads are either up or down, and they trap the horizontal weft threads. With each linear step in weaving, there is a point of no return, leaving no room for doubts or excessive editing. When I discovered this, I let go of my lifelong (since age six!) dream of becoming a writer and dove in head on."

Pillars:
A View from the East 
"As a child growing up in Japan, I knew the Silk Road started at our end, winding through China and India, reaching somewhere beyond the Big Buddhas. I imagined colorful cargo undulating on camelbacks. Early this year I learned there are indeed tributary routes traversing though my old stomping grounds; silk products from the greater region were collected in Hachiohji City, transported on carts pulled by animals and men to the port of Yokohama, and shipped beyond. I imagine growers and weavers then had no idea where their silks ended up; I imagine they had no idea what the ancient capitals of Persia, Greece and Rome looked like."

Self-portrait, a page in our collective book-shaped piece, facing my Personal Profile/Bio above. I'm not sure if a blurb for this piece is needed, but anyhoo:
Title undecided
"Growing old and becoming an invisible middle-aged woman is not fun, even if one’s body shape never changed much from the age of 3 onwards, skipping the svelte teenage stage. But of late, I have most decidedly become terribly and permanently annoyed by the exponential malfunction. Why, I was26 only last year!"

Friends(hip) Piece: 
You Got my Back; I’ve Got Yours
"I am a self-taught weaver. In the mid-90’s my greatest living resources were weavers who took part in an Internet weaving list. In the last six and a half years since I discovered blogging and blogger weavers, they have been my community. Though I work alone on my looms in the basement; this community enables me to learn and thrive as a weaver.

"The colorful and varied weft threads in this piece were sent by the weavers from around the world. Thank you: Kaz Madigan, NSW, Australia; Connie Rose, CA, USA; Cally Booker, Dundee, Scotland; Mette Frøkjær, Allingåbro, Denmark; Margery M. Haber, NY, USA; Gaye Sutton, Carterton, NZ; Dianne Dudfield, Katikati, NZ; Peg Cherre, NY, USA; Holly Haynes, WA, USA; Sampling, Melbourne, Australia; Donatella Chiesa, Genova, Italia; Kathryn Harmon, OR, USA; Judy Nolan, NSW, Australia; Sandy Gunther, CA, USA; JM, Blijham, Nederland; Daniella Zeni Bomatter, Willer, France; Rachel Beckman, MD, USA; Dorothy Lumb, Derbyshire, England; Nancy Sayer, ACT, Australia; Terri Bibby, BC, Canada; Gail Gondeck, NY, USA and the member of New York Guild of Handweavers, NYC, and Jocky Hollow Weavers Guild, NJ, USA; Esmae Emerson, Nelson, New Zealand."

I had intended to add your blog urls innitially but since tehre are so many of you and this will only be printed and posted on the wall, I've decided against it. Apologies. If you'd like your name/location changed/corrected in the above blurb, please leave a comment or email me.

EDIT: I had hoped to go short and sharp with my Profile/Bio, but I didn't like what I posted here exactly; the end and comparison to editing was too abrupt for something so important to me. The rewrite, on the other hand, is so long it reads like a blog post and counter to my intent. I would so appreciate your input. (Long version omitted.)

EDIT: I rewrote this again, and unless I have a big change of heart or too much time on my hands, I think I can stick with this version.

Personal Profile or Bio, Draft Three
"I grew up watching my mother knit, sew and embroider while listening to her chant how much she longed to weave. The idea weaving is the ultimate textile work was thus ingrained in me. Mother started weaving when she was 60.

"Since I was six, I had hoped to be a writer. In the 90’s, while learning to edit, I discovered my two contrasting preferences: to write detailed and flowery descriptions and saturate the pages with ambiance and pictures in the first draft, and to cull to the bare minimum in the second. I could not find a happy compromise, so I took up weaving to relax.

"The simplicity of weaving suits my personality. The vertical warp threads are either up or down, and they trap the horizontal weft threads. Weaving requires many linear steps, most of which are not the weaving on the loom, but setting up the loom and finishing the woven cloth. With each step weavers cross points of no return, beyond which backtracking or drastic editing are onerous. This appeals to me. Now I blog for relaxation."

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