Dee Stewart Merrell
The Space Within III
Too much space? Never enough? Or the obvious “ SPACE – The Final Frontier”. I had to be true to my first feeling on this challenge, and it had to be the space that is mysterious and unknown. I wanted to show all the colors and energy of a nebula, I wanted to bring the exploding darkness to life. Then I knew that I could show space in my own way: with a circle. These were just a few of the rabbit holes that I went down and I feel like I also did a bit of time travel - because I completely changed my entire piece this morning, the day of REVEAL.
This past week I was at a Quilting Adventures retreat in Schulenburg, TX, and my teacher was Jane Sassaman. Many things that she told us, and I did take notes, made a definite impression on me and I absorbed some things to such a degree that when I got home on Thursday evening and viewed my “space piece” again, it no longer pleased me. I tried to stitch new life into it, but that did not work. So I started a brand new art piece on Friday… the design was really looking good, and then I stitched it - the stitching turned it into a psychedelic sunflower! I like it, and I will use it after some major tweaks, but not for this challenge.
Back to my Sassaman notes: Simplify and Exaggerate. I knew that I did not have time to design a background, so I would need fabric that did the work for me. I had tried hand dyes and batiks before because they have a lot of depth and movement. A really nice green caught my eye and when I spread it out it was one of those fabrics that you cannot live without but you are never sure what to do with it. It was a Robert Kaufman and designed by Sherrill Kahn, the fabric name was “The Fire Within II “ .. thus the name of this work:. “The Space Within III”. (three tries to get it right.)
The Space Within I
The Space Within II