I am designing a class that I’m calling “12 Ways to Use Found Objects” in your art quilts. This is my Sampler of the 12 Ways. Which are listed below.

Can you see the numbers next to each image: 1, 2, 3 etc?

Sampler for 12 Ways class

  1. Glue on/ sew invisibly.  This is the easiest and most obvious.  I try to at least rotate the object, so it is not so obvious what it is, or was.  Can you tell what this is/was?
  2. Sew on decoratively.  This changes the “thing,” using decorative or contrasting stitching.
  3. Trap/ tulle/ cheese cloth. Trapping the object with net, cheese cloth or tulle.  sewing the cloth down can be done in a number of ways.
  4. Paint the object. This is very useful.  An ordinary object like a bottle cap can look quite different. In this case I also drilled a hole in the bottle cap.  Also useful!
  5. Change shape/ cut.  This is crucial.  I use many different tools, depending on what I am cutting. For example a utility knife for cork, a metal shears for plastics and metal and a Dremel for ceramics. Can you tell what this was before I cut it?
  6. Paper –  text. By fusing MistyFuse to both sides of paper it can be preserved and stitched. Text can be meant to be read. This example shows the text using two different ways of cutting it out.
  7. Paper – as texture, design only. Or papers can be used just as a design element.  Can you tell what this paper was originally? Either way, it has MistyFuse on both sides of the paper.
  8. Reverse applique. This is not quite the proper use of “reverse applique” but I wanted to express the idea that an item can be placed under the top layer of the quilt.  There are many ways to do this.
  9. Create animals/ figures. Of course this one takes some time.  The little creature has to be created, then attached.
  10. Heat/ distort/ plastic bags. This takes some experimenting with heat, and different types of bags.  I have quite a collection!
  11. Sew directly on the paper – Greeting cards. This method isn’t really for art quilts, but is useful for making greeting cards out of your collection of cards received.
  12. Combinations methods. Stacking. Paint/ trap. Cut/ paint. A reminder that by combining methods the possibilities are endless!

I’m sure there are more as well.  This is the first time I am offering this class. I hope to continue to experiment and learn from my students as well.

I’ll blog after the class this winter!

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I’m not sure where I first saw the work of Kurt Schwitters.  The Peggy Guggenheim Museum in Venice?  The Cleveland Museum of Art? But I was drawn to it immediately.

The back story of these collages are compelling. He was an early 20th century German artist from Hanover, who like many of his generation, was turned upside down by the devastation of The Great War.

He explained,”In the war, things were in terrible turmoil. What I had learned at the academy was of no use to me and the useful new ideas were still unready…. Everything had broken down and new things had to be made out of the fragments; and this is Merz. It was like a revolution within me, not as it was, but as it should have been.”

He picked up scraps from the streets and made art with it.

Every now and then I get a notice from Fine Art America that one of my print has sold.  The profit margin is small, but it’s nice to know that someone was interested!  This sale goes back to my painting days, before my medium became fiber art and art quilts.  This series of paintings was done for McConway and Torley, a foundry in Pittsburgh.

It looks nice, matted and framed!

Recently Sold – 40 Minutes Ago

Martha Ressler sold a 20.000″ x 15.375″ print of Loading Cores to a buyer from Aliquippa, PA.

Martha Ressler

I see my art quilts as impressions of place – real or imagined. I like to include items discarded by humans as a kind of archeological thumbprint. An object discarded or lost might merge with page…

 

 

A group of art quilt artists organized by Sandra Lauterbach and Sandra Poteet is showing at our second venue: Vision Gallery in Chandler, AZ, Nov. 8 – Jan. 5, 2019.  The opening reception is Saturday Nov. 17, 4-6 PM.

The piece I have in this show is called Celebrating the Destruction of Apartheid. On a visit to South Africa I was thrilled by this lighthearted moment. In front of the High Court Annex in Capetown, where South African had to report annually to be registered as one of 7 “races”, today anyone is free to sit on this “whites only” bench. Apartheid is where it belongs — in the ashcan of history.celebrating the destruction of apartheid small

If you are in the neighborhood of Chandler, AZ, please visit this important show, where 31 fiber artists remind us that THIS thing should not be forgotten . They offer hope, a tender need to call out to the world to remember the precious things in life.

I’ve just completed new work in the Eastern Europe in Stitches series. I’m getting ready to hang a show of the complete body of work at Judy’s on Cherry in Reading on Monday.  The reception will be Thursday, November 15, 5-7 PM. The show is called Doubletake East, because my husband Jay Ressler will also show his work from our trip to Eastern Europe. Contrast and compare!

Peoples violin

Of the stamps from DDR (East Germany), one says Musikinstrumente der Volker. Musical instruments of the people. Are they any differents from the others I wonder?

Martha Ressler, “People’s Violin,” 8 x 10 framed.  Art Quilt, hand stitched with found objects and stamps from Germany.

relativity framed 8 x 10

An image of Albert Einstein from the remaining pieces of the Berlin Wall. He lived in Berlin for many years until he left for the United States in 1933 when Hitler came to power.

Martha Ressler, “Relativity,” 8 x 10 framed. Art Quilt, drawn and hand stitched with found objects and stamps from Germany and the US.

mystery figure framed 8 x 10

A mysterious hooded and winged figure, painted on the Berlin Wall. Who is it? Part of Eastern Europe in Stitches series.

Martha Ressler, “Mystery Figure,”  8 x 10 framed. Art Quilt, drawn and hand stitched with found objects and stamps from Germany.

tear down this wall fraed 8 x 10

An image from the remaining pieces of the Berlin wall captures the exuberant feeling of freedom in 1990.

Martha Ressler, “Tear Down this Wall,”  8 x 10 framed. Art Quilt, drawn and hand stitched with found objects and stamps from Germany.

raise a glass framed 8 x 10

Most of Germany’s wine is produced in the Western part of the country, except for the Saxony region, along the Elbe River, near Dresden. I particularly enjoyed the Golden Reisling!

Martha Ressler, “Raise a Glass.” 8 x 10 framed. Art Quilt, hand stitched with found objects  from Germany (and Cuba and Czech Republic).

 

For a themed show at Studio B in Boyertown entitled Art of Film Exhibition, I decided to combine one of my dearest heroes, Harriet Tubman with Wonder Woman.

Harriet was a diminutive enslaved woman who escaped and then made numerous trips South to help more slaves escape.  She said, “I freed a thousand slaves I could have freed a thousand more if only they knew they were slaves.” It probably wasn’t that many, but she is still very much a superhero in my eyes. She also served as a nurse in the Civil War, and a spy for the Union.

All she needed was some Superhero hair and a headband.

I had some Wonder Woman fabric, but bought some additional superhero fabric, and a spiderman toy to perch on her shoulder.

The piece won an award and will be exhibited, after the Studio B show closes at the Reading Film Fest in November.

Martha with Harriet Tubman as Superhero

I have to write today about someone else’s art.

My husband and I saw the art of Julio César Cepeda Duque in Cuba over 3 years ago, and it was love at first sight. The humor, the craftsmanship and artistry and use of found objects really grabbed us.

el-aviador

We determined to help this artist by bringing him to the US for an exhibition.

It took thousands of dollars, and work by dozens of people to obtain his visa (an O1 visa for person of “extraordinary ability.”) We put together what has become a hard working committee to organize his housing, the exhibit itself at GoggleWorks Center for the Arts in Reading PA, visits to schools and universities, festivals, and many home visits, picnics and dinners.

With Alexis.jpg

Now he is here.

Here we were picking him up at the Philadelphia airport at 3 AM August 11.

3 am at Philly airport.jpg

His first “assignment” was to make a sculptural mural for the city of West Reading.

It turned out to be 6 panels that together form the Island of Cuba. It will be installed Monday.

Final touches

Today will be an advance unveiling of the work at a reception in West Reading.

Then he’ll start work in his studio at GoggleWorks, getting ready for the exhibition opening night Sept 7.

He is such a nice, charming person, and so very hard working, focused, and efficient.

So many people have come foward to help, it has been a pure joy to meet them and work with Julio to make his visit an outstanding success.

8 17 Dale Paul Polly Julio