Now the compost pile is cooking! This is more what I expected to see from a piece of painted canvas buried in the compost pile for two weeks.
It’s interesting how the bugs have eaten part of it and left holes. It also turned stiff, as if it was starched. It’s about 20″ x 24″ in size.
I’ve laid it on top of some painted pieces of canvas so you can see the chewed areas more clearly. Now I’m thinking about how to incorprate it into a larger work of art.
Thank you for your comments last week about ephemeral art materials. I’ve taken your advice about not letting longevity of the art influence my experimentation with materials. I’m starting on a new piece that uses natural dyes to create what I hope will be deep blacks and charcoal grays.
It’s going to be a mixed media piece about Earth, iron, grounding and our need for safety. How can I create a feeling of safety through my art? I’m thinking dark, cavern, cave, womb and earthy materials.
I’ve folded, tied and clamped some painted and iron-stained pieces in shibori fashion to be placed in a dyebath. The folds and binding create areas that resist the dye.
I’m using logwood for my first dye, which usually gives a purple color. But in the presence of iron, the colors turn to grays and blacks. There’s iron in some of the fabrics, and others are wrapped around pieces of decorative iron, so I’m hoping for rich coloration.
So far the dyebath is looking more gray than black, but it has a few more days to go before it will be done extracting color from the logwood bark. If it’s not dark enough, I can always do a second dyebath, maybe using a different dark color like walnut husks. But the grays might be lovely, too.
What are you experimenting with in your life these days? I’d enjoy hearing your thoughts. You can share them with us in the comments section below.
With love and appreciation,