Wednesday, June 28, 2017

London - Sunday & the British Museum

Sunday began slowly...mostly with the girls and myself still adjusting to the time difference. Once fully awake and ready, we set off for a bit of exploring.


The mosaic tiles at the tube stop were a welcome sight


as was this bit of graffiti.


As we made our way to the British Museum, the architecture of London began to catch my eye.



I remember the surprising splashes of color from previous visits


and began to think of London as a Roy G Biv sort of city.



Ellie and Grace couldn't resist the red phone booths.


Like all great museums, the architecture of the British Museum makes it a work of art all on its own.


We visited several of the galleries and saw priceless treasures - the Rosetta Stone, one of the Easter Island stones - yet it was Bern O'Donoghue's Dead Reckoning installation as part of Refugee Week at the museum that I remember most.

Bern O'Donoghue's Dead Reckoning at British Museum, detail
 
Dead Reckoning is an ongoing project bearing witness to the thousands of migrants and refugees who have died, and continue to die, attempting to cross the Mediterranean Sea in search of sanctuary and a better life.   Each tiny, hand-marbled paper boat is marked with a relationship to another person, a fragile reminder of the individuals caught up in the biggest humanitarian crisis in Europe since World War II. *

Bern O'Donoghue's Dead Reckoning at British Museum, detail

Bern O'Donoghue's Dead Reckoning at British Museum, detail

Bern O'Donoghue's Dead Reckoning at British Museum, detail

Bern O'Donoghue's Dead Reckoning at British Museum, detail


* from Bern O'Donoghue's web site
photo credit for all photos in this post - Jennifer Coyne Qudeen

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

London - Saturday

Greetings from London! One of the perks of having a husband whose work requires him to travel is that sometimes it's possible for the girls and I to join him. His past few summer meetings in London have been scheduled at the last minute making it impossible for us to tag along. Thankfully, we had adequate advance notice this time!


We took a red flight Friday night (bad idea on my part...rationally made sense, yet not realistically) and slept away half the afternoon once all checked in. 


When John was finally able to drag us off the couch (me) and the floor (the girls),


we enjoyed a leisurely stroll through the neighborhood.


Near the end of London Bridge, was a memorial for the Manchester 


and London Bridge tragedies,


some left by travelers from all around the world. 


Ellie was particularly curious and would have read each note if time had allowed.


Back in our room, the setting sun painted the sky beautifully and provided the perfect backdrop for the bit of the London Eye that we can see. Now to adjust to the time difference.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Mushrooms

This morning, while removing the mushrooms growing by the front porch, in hopes of doing so before our pup discovers them and deems them interesting enough to taste


(because my mushroom knowledge is woefully lacking and I have no idea if these are harmful or not),


I once again paused to wonder...


I am the only one who looks at the underside of mushrooms 


and see pages upon pages of books


just waiting to be read?



And an umbrella every now and then?

Friday, June 2, 2017

Santa Fe Retreat 2017 - And all the rest

Once again Radiant Light Art Studio has worked its magic on me.


From the first step through this lovely weathered gate,  


 the energy and warmth of the place can be felt.


Storm clouds have circled the studio all week, providing breathtaking views as well as


much needed rain for this dry land.

One of the noticeable differences between fall (our usual time here) and spring, has been the ceaseless wind. The week was ushered in by strong winds that the neighbor's flag totally unfurled and acting as a weather vane.

Jennifer Coyne Qudeen, detail of work in progress, 2017     

At some point, I wondered if it were possible to stitch the wind.


With so much zigging and zagging happening, my machine decided to have a bit of fun and throw in a tangle of threads every now and then.

Jennifer Coyne Qudeen, detail of work in progress, 2017

The story tiles and studio muse chatted 

Jennifer Coyne Qudeen, detail of work in progress, 2017

and filled me on what to do next.

Jennifer Coyne Qudeen, detail of work in progress, 2017

Sewing breaks were spent doing asemic (or arsenic as the auto-correct on my phone thought best on an Instagram post this morning) writing on paper and cloth. One such break lead me wonder if I could make the zig zag stitch resemble writing

Jennifer Coyne Qudeen, detail of work in progress, 2017

before returning to stitching the wind

Jennifer Coyne Qudeen, detail of work in progress, 2017

and circles.

52 story tiles were sliced, rearranged, stamped on and stitched with 48 of them making the cut.

One of the highlighta of this visit was meeting Marianne of Over the Rainbow blog. Back before Pam and I ventured to Santa Fe for the first time, Marianne was kind enough to recommend restaurants and places to visit. Each year since has had her traveling while we're here. Thankfully, our schedules finally coincided. What a lovely time we had!


All is now packed and the studio feels a bit empty, wistful...or maybe it's really just me. Time here is special and I am thankful for it and for being able to share it with Pam. Until next year...

Monday, May 29, 2017

Santa Fe Retreat 2017 - Story Tiles

Way back in 2010, I took a big piece of black linen and painted it white, added a tad of yellow, stamped a story within a story and then added other surface design elements before cropping it several times. A post from January 23, 2011 shows my thought process along the way as well as 88 of the 106 story tiles.

All this time, the tiles have rested quietly in a bin in my studio closet. Once or twice a year, I take them out for a few days and ponder just what the next step is. Ideas have played hide and seek with me...until I decided that they were the perfect thing to bring to Santa Fe to work on. If you follow me on Instagram, then you know that I've been

Jennifer Coyne Qudeen, work in progress 2017

stitching circles,

Jennifer Coyne Qudeen, work in progress 2017


Jennifer Coyne Qudeen, work in progress 2017

and lines,  

Jennifer Coyne Qudeen, work in progress 2017

Jennifer Coyne Qudeen, work in progress 2017

stamping and 

Jennifer Coyne Qudeen, work in progress 2017

writing stories. 

Jennifer Coyne Qudeen, work in progress 2017

I've been cutting and layering, 

Jennifer Coyne Qudeen, work in progress 2017

trying to decide which is really the front

Jennifer Coyne Qudeen, work in progress 2017

and which is the back.

Jennifer Coyne Qudeen, work in progress 2017

I've set a challenge for myself - to see how many story tiles can be finished during my time here. In the process, the thresh hold of my comfort zone is being tested. It feels good to stretch and push my creative muscles...to play, to think what if and then find out.




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