Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Postcards: Lynne Heller

Lynne Heller, Cutter Quilt #1 (detail), 2002
Hexagons are a big influence on my thinking these days. I love the possibilities that they offer and how they fit together. This image is a detail of Cutter Quilt #1 by Lynne Heller. The postcard was for a Wide Borders show with Lynne Heller, Lorraine Roy, and Karen Thiessen (me). The show started at the Burlington Art Centre, and then travelled to the Tom Thomson Memorial Art Gallery, and finally to the Cambridge Gallery. This postcard is for the Tom Thomson show (2003).

Lynne is a creative polymath: she works with textiles, virtual reality, installation, sound, material culture, web design and she teaches post-secondary art. For the Wide Borders show, she did an installation (called Gift) with 16 channels of sound, recorded interviews and 80 heritage quilts loaned by Jeffrey Alford of Hot Sour Salty Sweet fame. Lynne supplemented her installation with five cutter quilts. Cutter Quilt #1 is a re-imagining of several heritage quilts that were too battered for Jeffrey to repair. Lynne breathed new life into what otherwise may have become landfill. Did you know that hexagons cannot be machine-sewn together: they all must be hand-sewn? Long ago, an unknown woman hand-pieced these hexagons, possibly cut from fabric remnants and old clothing. Lynne used a Dremel tool (probably with the wire brush attachment) to remove the hexagons of fabric to reveal the batting and the architecture of the quilt. How cool is that?

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