CONTEMPORARY ART IN A TRADITIONAL MEDIUM
After I finished the South Poles of the Planet Project in 2017, I decided to look from the macro view of the universe to the micro view of the different cells in the human body. I researched various images of cells, and I chose several images to look at. I took several of these images and made several decisions as to colours and materials to use in these rugs.
I started with a retina cell in the human eye. The image was black and white but looked to me like a misshapen Little Red Riding Hood. I love working in those browns, greys, creamy whites, and orange silks. To me it has a slightly ominous quality.
I moved on to an HIV cell. In contrast to the retina rug, the HIV cell seemed to me to be a contrast of playfulness in the turquoise balls and the gaping ovals in the centre of the piece. Overall, the other piece was not as grim as its subject matter. It now hangs in Fife House in Toronto, a support centre for people living with HIV/AIDS.
For a change of mood, I experimented with a playful look at a human pluripotent stem cell. It’s loose ends and bright colours reminded me of the exciting possibilities of stem cells that can become any type of cell in the human body.
Lastly, in this project, I hooked a rug of an Art Deco human brain cell. I found the perfect hot yellow/lime cotton yarn to represent the electrical synapses between the brain cells. The multicoloured pink, purple and turquoise wool represents thoughts to me. Finally the dense black wool jersey material made the perfect background to show the space between the cells. The rug needed to be quite majestic and varied to me as I see the human brain this way.
I had expected this project to be longer with more rugs, but although I had more images, but I was done. I needed a break and a little lightness!
Human Brain Cell, 24″ x 28″, 2018, linen burlap backing, wool, cotton and synthetic fibers. $350
HIV Virus, 20” x 28”. 2018, linen burlap backing, wool, cotton and synthetic fibers. Sold
Human Pluripotent Stem Cell, 14″ x14″, 2018, linen burlap backing, wool, cotton and synthetic fibers. Sold
Human Retina Cell, 18″ x 28″, 2018, linen burlap backing, wool, cotton and synthetic fibers. $300