Posted in Emotions, Quilts

Beyond Rage

I am filled with fury, rage, anger, and I’m pissed off. I’ve had to tweak my psych meds because I am having stress pains. I’ve been pissed off since January 20. Often, when I’m this emotional, I don’t understand what’s going on inside of me. This might be a function of bipolar disorder, but it’s hard to tell. I’ve no idea how the “normal” brain works. I live with an interesting brain.

When I don’t understand what’s happening inside of me, I made art. It’s only through art that  I can identify the emotions and allow them to escape. I’m working on a quilt. It started with a fuzzy idea and grew. First came a phrase. “If you touch this without my permission, I will break your fucking arm. ”

I wanted to make an anatomically correct vaginal opening. Rather than squat over a tripod mounted camera and hope I got the focus right, I went on the internet and found photos. I wanted the vaginal opening to be three-dimensional. This took some fancy figuring and sewing. That’s a Swarovski crystal for the clitoris. I neglected to leave sufficient room for the urethra so it’s not represented.

First Draft:

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It’s a bad photo because I didn’t feel like hanging the quilt on the clothes line and just propped it on my cutting table. The blue/green lines are basting to hold the three layers together.

I needed another couple days to figure out what to do next. I had wanted to hand quilt words on the piece, but when I tried to lay the sentences out, I realized I couldn’t say what I wanted to say with stitches. I needed to write the words onto the quilt.

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I didn’t think free motion quilting would be a good idea for this quilt, so I am quilting the word “NO” in assorted sizes and in assorted places.

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Found my needle.

Will this quilt make the rage dissipate? I doubt it. The last time I went through this, I made a good half dozen sculptures. I’m beginning to understand what’s causing the rage, the depth of my rage, and to let the rage out in an acceptable manner.

I am linking with NinaMarie. If you have any interest in art, her blog is the best spot to visit. Lots of art and lots of artists. NinaMarie’s blog is here.

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Author:

I retired from the Public Defender Dept. November 12, 2015 after 21+ years as a criminal defense attorney. Now, I'm a full time multi-media artist and writer starting on a new adventure. As an artist, I create with beads, fabric, fiber, and ceramic clay. Sometimes separately; sometimes in assorted combinations. You can find my on-line store at: www.debthumanart.com.

12 thoughts on “Beyond Rage

  1. I marched on January 21st holding a big sign saying hands off my uterus so I think this is awesome! Aren’t you glad you can work off some of the frustration with your art? Bravo!👍

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  2. I thought my words for the year was going to be “production” but nope, RESIST is the only option and it must permeate everything I do. I don’t move very well and have to be careful because stimulus overloads my rotten excuse for a body but I still need to do more to stop this horrible rotten excuse for a government from becoming normal. Government is not like business and even it it were these people are corrupt liars.

    I love your quilt and I think I get your message, lol, no no no no. No!

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  3. Oh my. Powerful. Now in my mid-sixties, I remember seeing Judy Chicago’s ‘Dinner Party’ when it travelled to Calgary, Alberta a good thirty or more years ago. Your piece is reminiscent. If you don’t know that work, I suggest you research it. It will bring you some…sense of camaraderie if nothing else. Older now…and mindful of my post-caregiver stress (long story) and blood pressure (genes)…I journal (2-3 pages almost every day — a la Julia Cameron); I read uplifting material that is not ‘fluffy’ but strong — the Psalms, the poetry of Mary Oliver and Wendell Berry, the musings of Parker J. Palmer, the poetry of Marie Howe. And I too make art — sometimes statement work (such as yours) and sometimes simply stitching rhythmically (embroidery) or strip piecing…order out of chaos. And I pray…loudly, sometimes with foul language, often in tears. God has broad shoulders. 🙂 I believe everyone has a spiritual kernel within; I would suggest you locate yours and use it to soothe, comfort and empower. It is already connected to your art, so you won’t have far to look. Blessings to you as you go forward.

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      1. One of these days, I’ve got to see The Dinner Party. I saw photos in Ms. years ago when the piece was first made. A few years back, there was a number of pieces by Judy Chicago at New Mexico State University – Judy lives in Albuquerque. One of the molds for one of the dinner plates was on display.

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      2. Living in Western Canada, it’s doubtful that I will be able to revisit The Dinner Party…but it’s good to know it has a home and is still being seen by the public. At this current time, it is doubtless making a powerful statement once again.

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  4. What power. I’d like all the 20 something women who asked, “why didn’t those women speak up” to see this. I have been emotionally disturbed since the election results were announced. I have been virtually unable to create. I love what you did, it’s empowering. LeeAnna

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    1. I find doodling in my sketchbook is helpful. It can bring me back to center, it can work out a design for me, it can give me a place to start. Being a multi-media visual and a verbal artist is helpful. When one art toy isn’t working for me, I have other toys from which to choose. Doodle. Keep a journal. Learn a new skill. Try out a new to you art toy. Hang in there. Eventually, we will win. And we will teach the young un’s how to fight back.

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