Tuesday, April 29, 2008

A bit of history


My Japanese Embroidery teacher, Tonie Evans, was given this embroidery by a student of hers named Barbara Benson. This embroidery was purchased by her Uncle while stationed in Japan during WWII. It was kept in an attic, and so the silk is very dry rotted. The colors and the embroidery have remained intact but, because of the dry rot, the piece was being held together by the embroidery alone.

In the words of my teacher, Tonie Evans...

The photo’s are not perfect, nor is the embroidery. However, when you view it, realize your own knowledge and skill and use this only for a reference of color and the feelings you will derive as a result of viewing them. The heart of one or many is in the shading and stitching of what you will view. It is with this intent that I share this embroidery. We observe many things in our lives, and later it subconsciously comes forth as we create our own work. I hope this works for you. So you will see padding stitches under worn/rotted silk, and shapes that are NOT symmetrical which gives the blossoms so much character. And it was done with deliberation, so I feel the design was drawn this way. The shapes still remain lovely however, as they were intently stitched this way, not be error. Each little blossom or leaf is full of personality. There are many of the techniques we use frequently as Japanese Embroidery students, and you will recognize vertical to shape, diagonal—some right and left, lines of held thread, padding in many areas of flowers, as well as under the body and legs of the roosters. There is random long and short in the cock’s comb, etc. The grasses appear free form diagonal, and add a delightful airy base to it all.

Tonie took pictures of this beautiful embroidery and then cut it into smaller sections, giving a section to each of her students.

These little bits of heaven are a real treasure for me and I cannot wait to frame them in a special way. The roosters were left intact and will be framed separately by my teacher.

1 comment:

Hélène H said...

What a wonderful piece of embroidery. I am in love with the rooster.

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