Saturday, 1 August 2015

Mrs Midas: A Four in Art Quilt #3




I'm here to share my latest contribution to Four in Art.  I'd like to introduce Mrs Midas:


Mrs Midas
A Four-in-Art Quilt, August 2015
No 3 in the 'Literature' series


This quilt was inspired by the poem by Carol Duffy, which you can read in full here.  The poem comes from a collection called The World's Wife, in which Duffy examines, sometimes very comically, the lives of the women behind a collection of famous men.  Mrs Midas is a poem from the point of view of the wife of a modern Midas, "the woman who married the fool who wished for gold".

It's full of beautiful and vivid imagery, and terrible sadness.  Unable to embrace his wife any longer Midas has to move out to their "caravan in the wilds, in a glade of its own".



"You knew you were getting close.  Golden trout on the grass...And then his footprints glistening next to the river's path."


The colours that the poem evokes are what influenced my quilt - I really wanted to get across the feeling of the gold, beautiful but unexpected in contrast to the greens of the grass and the wooded glade.  It is made using various kona and klona cottons and some gold silk dupion, and quilted simply in the ditch.  I had quite clearly in mind some ideas - the (rather wobbly) flying geese which represent Midas's footprints in the grass, and the stylised applique leaf - and I knew I wanted to make an improv quilt, and for it to be abstract, which fits in with my plan to make each quilt in the series progressively more so.  (My previous two quilts are here.)


I'm not satisfied with the pictures of this quilt and I want to take it outdoors when the weather is more reliable, but I do love it. There are many practical details I would fix but I managed to get out what I had in my head!

Watch out for the reveal of our final quilts on 1 November but meantime please do visit the other participants and check out their quilts for this round of the series.


Elizabeth at OP Quilt  
Betty at a Flickr site: http://www.flickr.com
Jennifer at Secondhand Dinosaur 
Nancy at  Patchwork Breeze
Rachel at The Life of Riley
Simone at Quiltalicious
Susan at PatchworknPlay

13 comments:

  1. Oh, how I do love this! From the variety of greens to the strewn bits of gold this is such a wonderful and interesting visual reprentation of that poem. I applaud your moving forward in abstraction, wishing I could emulate your path but admiring it nonetheless, as you communicate your ideas so ably in fabric and form. Exellent quilt, Catherine!

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  2. Catherine, oh my goodness - how great is this?!!? I first studied the quilt without reading closely your post - just thinking about Mrs. Midas. THEN I read the poem and loved it and applaud your ability to draw from it so perfectly. The gold silk, in these pictures, comes across in just the right shade. The greens take you into and out of the woods with their range of shades. Like Elizabeth, I admire your ability to translate things in abstract - so wish I could let go of the literal. Great job!

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  3. I love the contrast between the greens and gold! And Elizabeth and Betty sum up my thoughts perfectly! Your ability to make a truly abstract art quilt! This is certainly a winner!

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  4. Such a beautiful translation Catherine! Wonderful subtle shade variation and the different poetic elements are cleverly symbolised. I wonder if this is a product from your new studio?

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  5. Like many others I have always struggled with abstract in quilts and quilt blocks, but you have definitely cracked it Catherine! This is a really lovely piece and a wonderful representation of your chosen subject. It definitely seems that being part of this amazing group is really flexing your creative muscles :)

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  6. First I had to read the poem, of course. The quilt is just wonderful. The green, gold and black are so lovely together. Really so stunning.

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  7. My goodness, that's amazing!

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  8. This is a fantastic quilt and it captures the 'story' of the poem perfectly. I can only echo what everyone else has said. It's amazing as an interpretation and as a work in itself :)

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  9. Clever and lovely - what more can I say?

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  10. I'm impressed by how you put "into fabric" the very clear vision you had through the poem. It looks simple at first but then it is infact very detailed. Well done!

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  11. This is a lovely quilt, and now I've read the story behind it I do very much feel the sadness in it, such a strong interpretation of the poem despite (or maybe because of) its abstract nature, and that feels very clever to me.

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  12. A beautiful quilt made more beautiful by your response to this poem ... fabulous !

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  13. I missed this post at the time Catherine. A lovely idea to combine quilting with poetry.

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