Monday, July 24, 2017

principles of uncertainty

True communication can happen only in an open space.
 It's good to not know what to say.
 It's good.
End of discussion.
 "Washing dishes is an antidote to confusion."
 Maira Kalman

"The question is, does one need to know?
And what is it you know once you think you know?"  Maira Kalman
 " We see trees.  What more do we need"  M.K. 
Most of the text in this post is from The Principles of Uncertainty by Maira Kalman
a book I read each year when I come to the cottage.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017


What I do know is that I do not know.
My path does not already exist, it comes into existence moment by moment and at the same time, it drops away.
My father passed away very peacefully early yesterday morning.

He always always gave me unconditional support and love.
never criticized me, taught me how to drive.

I've written about him many times over the years.  Here is the first time.
I shared  his mantra here.
For more about him, and our relationshiop, click on the dad link in the side bar.

I am feeling something but can't quite name it.   I suppose it is grief.

May 14 1923 - July 17 2017 
 Paul Elmer Johnson

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

how to love

I am writing this from Georgian Bay Canada.
Where the rocks are ancient spirals.
And folds.
And they have been here forever
and they shall continue.
And I've been working on the same pieces for months
And I shall continue.
And April and Jordan arrived on my birthday all the way from Chicago, and then they made a cake.
And we went for a sunset boat ride to celebrate.
And the sun continued its journey
And it too shall continue tomorrow
and the next tomorrow too
And then the next day April began to work with  a remarkable quilt top
Rescued from a flea market in Wisconsin
And finally,
the centerpiece that Jordan crafted for the birthday dinner
using wildflowers that have grown here forever
and they too shall continue
All these things fill me with gratitude
and tenderness
and wonder
and love.

Thursday, July 06, 2017

primordial faith

phenomenology is not a theory, it is a practice
have 'primordial faith' (merleau ponty)

have faith in my own perceptual experience
perceiving is not theoretical

this is just how it is

this is just how I experience it
a primordial dimension of experience

phenomenology does not replace everything that has gone before

it just tests it

phenomenology is lived experience
not denying anything

just clarifying
believing in the world

including myself in the world

not forgetting
letting my heart break
things keep happening

sometimes it is confusing
whenever I don't know what to do

I look at the sky

it is accessible all the time

Wednesday, July 05, 2017

how I spent Canada Day

At the cottage.
for Canada Day - July 1
Our son and his family visited.
 We made a cake for Canada's birthday and blew out the candles.
 We made two more flags for our expanding family.
 I didn't stitch.
The kids page was updated a couple of weeks ago, for those interested.  

Friday, June 30, 2017

prayer for the 21st century

May gardens be wild, like jungles,
May nature never be tamed,
May dangers create of us heroes
May fears always have names
May the mountains stand to remind us
Of what it means to be young,
May we be outlived by our daughters,
May we be outlived by our sons.

by John Marsden

Tomorrow is Canada Day and in my country we will be celeberating 150 years.  Canada is a young country with a history older than 150 years....short memories, high hopes.  

Prayer Flag For Canada at this link   (John Marsden is an Australian poet)

Monday, June 26, 2017

opening the door

 Trinity came back from exhibition in Vancouver and I was able to touch it again.
(now when i don't know what to do next

taking space between thoughts


looking at the sky a lot )
I needed to re-place the velcro strip
and re-mount the textile on it's supporting board,
and then return it to the local church's pulpit.
(just being present

and having self confidence

even while not knowing)

In the book, MY RELIGION, Leo Tolstoy implies that whatever happens in a violent revolution, there will also be an inner and hidden revolution in the people, out of which a new religion will be born which  will have the same effect of making life possible as the Christian religion used to.

We shall have had enough of cynicism, scepticism and humbug, and will want to live more musically.  How will this come about, and what will we discover?  

Instead of seeing absolutely nothing in the future other than the disasters that are bound to strike the modern world and civilization like so many thunderbolts, through revolution or war or the bankruptcy of worm eaten states. 

 Vincent Van Gogh letter to his brother Theo September 24 1888
(being kind to myself

becoming kinder to others

opening that door more and more

seeing what happens when I don't protect myself so much )

judy evelyn grandmom

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Quilt National 17 (the Nancy Crow legacy)

....and the Skeptic by Karen Schulz   81 " x 76"
cotton fabric, cotton batting, thread, yarn
hand dyed, machine pieced, machine quilted, couched
"I found myself asking the question, "What are you afraid of?"  The answer came back, "Look at what people have done.  You can do anything."  I decided then and there to embrace the whole of myself, the poet and the skeptic."  Karen Schulz Maryland USA  (Juror's award)

Nightshift by Kit Vincent 79 x 79 "
cotton, silk, dyed and commercial cottons, thread, batting
machine pieced and quilted, appliqued
 "I began without expectation, allowing the design to surface as I worked.  My goal was to challenge the perception of the material and to create an emotional repsonse with the viewer."  Kit Vincent  Ontario Canada
Chasms 23 by beth Carney  54 x 67 inches
hand dyed cotton fabtic, silk batting, madeira threads
raw edged fusing, machine pieced and quilted
" The bright colours traveling through the sometimes black, sometimes murky-grey, become a symbol of who we are as we move through experiences in life that continually challenge us.  Beth Carney  New York  USA
Zebra by Bonnie Bucknam  51 x 51 inches
hand dyed cotton fabric
machine pieced and quilted
"While touring South Africa, I had the pleasure of seeing a zebra in the wild." Bonnie Bucknam Washington USA

Conversations on Meaning  by Gerri Spilka  82 x 100 inches
commercial and hand dyed cottons, cotton and wool batting, cotton thread
improvisationally machine pieced and quilted (denoted by the artist
machine quilted by Marina Baudoin
"Interactions series reflects a fascination with themes that reappear.  The interactions, relationships, and ambiguities inherent among people, place, and human-made and biolgical forces."  Gerri Spilka  Pennsylvania USA  Juror's award
Formations #26 by Petra Fallaux  83 x 85 inches
hand dyed pima cottons, procion mx dyes
freely cut fabric, machine pieced and quilted
"Having grown up in the Netherlands, I find that I am most attracted to spare geometric forms.  Formation 26 evokes the vast horizon and moody morning skies over coastal Holland"  Petra Fallaux Pennsylvania USA

 Petra Fallaux was one of the jurors for this 20th biennial of Quilt National and says this about the exhibition as a whole:

"The driving motor behind the first Quilt National at the Dairy Barn in 1979 was to provide an exhibit opportunity to artists whose work was unwelcome by the organizers of the existing quilt shows.  This original impetus has resulted in a rich, tangible, and continuous biennial history of throught-provoking Quilt nationals.  Today, Quilt National is an art exhibition among many others of its kind, but it will forever be the first of its kind."  Petra Fallaux
Nancy Crow, one of Quilt National Founders has ben making quilts for 40 years
standing in front of the quilt that was awarded best of show 
"Wow!  What a rich variety of works greet viewers of quilt National 17.  As a juror, I was thrilled to see so many strong quilts entered by artists whose work I did not know and additionally thrilled by the astounding new growth shown by seasoned artists known for their singular earlier styles.  In all categories, I found that the best works exhibited dramatically strong ideas combined with dedicated techniques that were skillfully executed."  Nancy Crow   Ohio  USA
Line Study 17 by Margaret Black    90 x 75 inches
Kona cotton, thread, wool bat, cotton batting
free form cutting and piecing, machine quilted
Best of Show award