Sunday, July 28, 2013

Ever Expanding

 Drying mushrooms for exciting dye experiments.
 Over at the pot, after steeping for five days, 
two bundles were unfurled...
Silk, ferns, iron, linen.
I can hardly wait to show you what is coming of 
all of these experiments. 
I can tell you that my horizons are expanding. 
My imagination is soaring.
My hands are working the needle, 
all of which make my heart very happy.

More to come from the Studio, 
but right now, I'd like to introduce you to a few artists 
and a hot topic (to me.) 
The serendipitous meeting of fiber artist
 Christine Mauersberger 
on a woodland path at Squam two months ago 
has led to, among other things, my awareness of 
Cat Bennett
I found Cat Bennett by way of Christine's blog.

While these are not my own words, 
 as an artist I can definitely get behind the message,
especially during a time when art programs are 
being cut from our public schools. 
  Following is an excerpt from Cat Bennett's website. 
Please click this link to read her complete post 
and to see the video on Huffington Post Live:

The show was inspired by an article on The Huffington Post about Andrew Bott, principal of the Orchard Gardens Elementary School, in inner city Boston, which was rife with disorder and low test scores when he took over in 2010. Among his interventions was replacing 80% of the teachers, firing the security staff and hiring art teachers instead. The results were a dramatic reduction in mayhem and much higher test scores.
So what exactly does art do? First, even with minimal skills, people are able to express themselves, an empowering experience. We all have a deep desire to simply be seen and heard.  (Please click the link above to read Cat Bennett's full post.)
What are your thoughts about art and education in America?


  1. Dear Tierney, I think meeting you was the reason I was there at Squam. Am infinitely pleased that you are now aware of Cat Bennett and her books. Carry on dear friend.

    1. Thanks for stopping by, Christine. I love the silk-cotton thread that you supply at Hank and Spool, online. I'm anxious to purchase some yardage to see what I can do with it, as well. For now, like you said, the thread is a dream to work with. Keep bringing us the good stuff!

  2. Love what is coming out of your dye pots!

    Education in America? I truly depends on where you live. The education system where I live now is horrific. The versions of American History that are taught here are laughable. I can't write anymore about this as it really sickens me.

  3. Thanks Lara - the dye pots seem to be where it's at this summer! Finally. :)
    I struggle with the notion that our kids and teachers deserve so much more than they're getting, not just related to art, and how to turn that around?

  4. The focus of the majority of the schools in our area is on their athletic programs. Until there are cutbacks made in those areas and education becomes the priority of the school systems I think we will sadly continue to be in a downward spiral.

  5. I observe the same priorities here in our community. Thankfully, outside resources offer creative opportunities. I think we just need more of it though!

  6. With 30 years of public school teaching behind me, I could speak to any number of pros and cons that I see in the educational system in the US. However, the vast majority of my years were spent teaching those students who struggled with traditional learning. Art, music, drama, and yes, sports, were often the only reasons that many of my students showed up to school every day. These were the areas where they shined, they excelled, they didn't stumble, they weren't fearful of participation.

    We are currently immersed in a cook-cutter, teach to the test, then test and test again system. This is a course for failure and at this point, I think that the only people who can bring an end to this are the parents. They have to care enough to stop this madness - many do, but too many are content to lay all of society's ills at the feet of public schools. They must be willing to do more than complain.

  7. Your insights are always appreciated, Tracy. I had a feeling change would have to come from the community / parents. It's time to begin taking the first step on a long path.

  8. Thanks, Clarice! More dye experiments today, including sunflowers. So much fun!

  9. Cool to see all the colors that are created from your dying.
    I enjoy looking at them.

    1. Thanks, honey! You get to see them in person, you lucky duck!