What a fun day!
Thanks to all family and friends who came out for the opening of Discarded yesterday! It was great to be with everyone and share thoughts about the stories behind and the techniques used to create my work.
A very special moment occurred when I introduced what I feel is the ultimate “discarded” piece, My Soldier Boy! I wanted to save the surprise for my daughters who would be attending yesterday — and I do believe it was a good surprise! Here are my daughters, their husbands, two of my granddaughters and I having a ball posing with the thread drawn boots on combat paper. I love my family!!! :):)
This particular work has special meaning to all of us. Several weeks ago, I went to the opening of an art show of my dear friend, Cindy Friedman. I was so proud to see and hear Cindy talk about her work! But in the same show were some veterans whose works had moved me to tears.
These veterans, as a part of their therapy for healing their wounds of war, had taken their uniforms, shredded them, mulched them in a Hollander beater, and made paper upon which they screen printed and drew their stories of war. When I shared the backstory of my upcoming art show, along with our family’s dedication to our country through service in the military, I was invited to their facilities in Branchburg, NJ to make combat paper from Ed’s uniforms.
One set of Ed’s Class A Winter Wools were shredded at my studio….
…a lifetime of service tucked in a shoebox
The wool fibers were then measured, weighed, and combined with water in the Hollander beater for several hours until finally a slurry is all that remains.
Using handmade screen forms, the slurry is then pulled into sheets…
…that are then pressed to remove excess water….
…and finally laid upon an air dryer to create the combat paper sheets.
Special thanks to Walt N, Program Assistant for Combat Paper NJ for his tutelage, and especially for his assistance with this final and very delicate stage! This was an experience I will never forget, and one which yielded something very special for my entire family!
My Soldier Boy
Thanks again to all who took the time to share this special day with me, cheered me from afar, and believe in my ability to become an artist! Thanks also to the vets in NJ — may God guide and comfort you as you walk your own path to a very full, restored, wonderful life!
Till next time,