Saturday, February 24, 2007

Australasian Quilt Convention Ramblings

Today I took myself to the Australasian Quilt Convention and I must say I walked away with mixed feelings.

I decided hit the exhibitions first and there are some fabulous artsists out there but there are also some very tough critics too. I refer to the "viewers" who very outspoken (almost obscenely so) of their thoughts about other people's work. Not everybody was like this, but I was surprise at just how 'bitchy' people were - the first time I'd really come across this!

The other thing that irked (annoyed) me was people's blatant disregard for a very simple request - NO PHOTOGRAPHS!!. As you enter the exhibition there was a very clear sign asking that people not take photographs to protect the intellectual property of the artists. Now I understand that people want a keepsake, and to tell the truth I had my camera tucked in my handbag, but that's where it stayed. But I was obviously in the minority as there were just so many cameras and flashes going off. To make matters worse, the place was crawling with "Angels" armed with white goves and knowledge of the exhbition and still NOBODY did anything about it!! - oh except 2 ladies who rather loudly commented "don't you just love how people take notice of the NO PHOTOGRAPHS SIGN!!!!!" but the camera army didn't flinch. Even my efforts to step into every photo possible didn't deter them.

So despite this I did enjoy the exhbition. The Australian New Zealand Artquilters Journal quilts were great. They were so versatile in technique, topic, materials and styles.

My favourites was the collaborative exhibition from tACTile - a goup of Canberra based textile artists - whose theme this year was "eye level". The artists of tACTile are Jenny Bowker, Dianne Firth, Helen Gray, Beth Miller and Beth and Trevor Reid (who work in partnership). Here is a bit about last years exhibition Five2.

Of course I didn't leave without hitting the trade hall and to do that I had to battle the crowds!! My only purchases were from The Thread Studio, but I was determined not to spend too much because I'm sure I have purchases from other shows that is still unused. My goal is to start using this stuff up. If I like it, I can always buy more, but to throw things out because they've gone off before I got around to it is definitely NOT on my agenda!.

I'm home now (obviously der!) nd have done the weekend blog crawl and now need to get productive. To do (with what is left of the weekend):
  • Catch-up with the Journal Quilt class. Lesson 4 (the last) of the journal quilt class is up and I haven't started on lesson 2. That's the beauty of on-line learning, I can do it when I'm ready.
  • Make a handbag for a very special someone (she knows who she is!!). I started this morning at B's Grandma's while I was waiting for the shops and the convention to open (I took B to work at 7 and had breakfast with him - that took me to 8 so I still had some time to kill)
  • Re-discover the dining table. This time it's not sewing stuff that's consumed it, just the junk mail, discarded mail, and other odds-and-sods that have been transferred from the kitchen bench when we clean it up.


Sarah E. said...

You know, I am constantly shocked when I hear about viewers' negatively slanted comments at a something as special as a quilt exhibit/conference. In any milieu the artist works his or her a** off to provide a well-thought-out, beautifully executed statement. I get irked (*grin* love that word!!), too, at the blatant discourtesy of these people who also blatantly ignore warning signs. I'm SO glad you were able to have a great time, and I'm thrilled to read that you managed to memorialize yourself constantly in these verboten photos...too bad you couldn't get your hands on some copies to post! oh and BTW, I really admire your restraint in only buying from the Thread Studio...I could easily have shot an incredibly huge amount of money at that place alone!!!

arlee said...

Believe it or not, i have never beeen to a quilt art show--but it sounds like the same type of crows as a "regular" gallery--"oh i could do better than that" etc

Sounds like you had fun anyways! Any new ideas/directions?

arlee said...

oops, i meant "crowd" not crows--though i guess that works too :}

Felicity said...

me too! i bought modestly at the thread studio and have already used some of my purchases! the other stalls left me a bit cold, i'm afraid, although i did look enviously at the babylock embellisher....i was one of those camera people but only taking photos of my journal quilts, honest! and with white glove lady permission.

hey i'm doing the joggles course too :)