I started to make flowers and scrolls, practise my Irish Crochet. I am in love with scrolls at the moment. They are my favourite motif, and while making a few, playing around with them, I noticed they looked like letters, so I tried to turn them into letters.
At the back of my mind, was the piece for this year’s International Freeform FibreArt Guild online exhibition. The theme for this year was picked just after the awful Haiti earthquake. "Somewhere in My World". A reaction to the terrible devastation the earthquake caused, but also to the community spirit that can rise from disasters like this. The monies raised from the sale of the exhibition book will go towards Mercy Corps Haiti Earthquake Response. (You can donate here http://www.mercycorps.org/fundraising/intff)
The theme was decided in January. Since then, the world has had many far-reaching global events take place, worldwide recession, volcanos, oil spills, floods, droughts, etc. I was also going through some personal distress of my own at the time. This made me feel isolated and small. I couldn’t help myself, I couldn’t help the world.
So, I took the theme literally. Somewhere in my world, there is a person, a child, a family, a population under duress, emotional, physical, economic. Somewhere in my world someone is saying SOS, whether it is silently cried or shouted out. This has been one of the hardest pieces I have ever made, because of the thoughts that came with it. It also made me think of it's history, of lace, of my cultural history. How beautiful things come from poverty. The need to create beautiful crafts, in order to sell them to get food to feed a family.
I was beginning to be weighted down, by a little bit of lace. I thought I would never get the idea to work, the pieces made, the whole damn thing finished, before I had a nervous breakdown. But then, as the piece came together, so did my thoughts on hope. In each individual motif of antique crochet lace, in each stitch is hope. Hope, that they can feed their families, buy medicine, live their lives. That is what an SOS call is. It's a cry of hope, to be saved, save us, save me. My personal hope, and my hope for the world. First there was fear, and then there was hope. My little piece of lace became a distress call.
Then, to top it off, I had to write a little bit of blurb about my piece. And I needed to do it without coming across as a complete loony, overwhelmed by lace-making and sailors stories.You can read it here http://www.freeformcrochet.com/2010/Pages/orla.html
On a happy, hope, kind of note, this piece managed to win me 4 tickets to The Knitting and Stitching Show! It was part of a Radio 1 'Knit Your Way Out of Recession'' competition. Talk about timing...
(apologies for the font mess, blogger being anti-font at the moment)