Thursday 3 December 2015

One loss, Two Jumpers, Three Thoughts


One big, one small. One bright, one muted. Both commissioned for exhibitions. Both rich with emotions, to me anyway. The larger inspires softness in me, although I made it through a time of loss. I sobbed into its fibres, I laid my head on its bulk. The care that I took in mending it, mending me through it, stitching meditatively, quietly, darning through my grief. Beginning a long healing process, not yet ended, from a rupture. It became, through death, a new project, unintended and changed through no choice of mine, but maybe better than the original. This jumper is the material of my grief. These stitches are both outpouring and staunch. Its fabric, the warmth and company of my loneliness.

The other however, the other jumper. The second commission. Similar in looks, less worked maybe. Different stitches, different tensions, in the yarn and in me. This jumper carries anger, I hated making it. Sitting in my studio in the dark months of winter, cold, resenting the return to my earlier feelings. Finishing it was a relief, I was surprised to find I like how it looks.

Together they represent times of difficulty and soothing, memories and futures. A time to use tacit knowledge, to take comfort in fabric and yarn, and my hands and my abilities, stitches replacing lost material. Time passing, skills passed on, jumpers remade. Somehow complete as a pair , they compliment each other.

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