Wednesday, 28 May 2008

a feminist issue

I have spent most of the day making a fat lady, or another fat lady if you count me.[here's one i made earlier}
She is calico bound and stuffed with lots of wadding and old wools which I always knew I would find a use for one day.
She, [must give her a name], is life size but not very demanding as yet, as she has no head, arms or bottom half of legs. She does have, however, a lovely fat tummy and bottom and a fairly fine pair of boobs. I suspect the latter need some help, boobs [and lips] are always more subtle than one would think.
I shall call her Clarissa.
Clarissa comes about because my stitching group, S.L.A.P.P.E.R.S, had a rush of blood to the collective head and decided to make 6 life size fat ladies the centre piece of our next exhibition.
The concept was keenly adopted before common sense could prevail and additionally it was decided that each F.L. should be covered [dressed] in the method of her downfall.
Clarrisa is to be dressed in crisp bags.
Her friends will display the wrappers of sweeties, booze, advertising, cakes and for some reason the last - will be covered in zips and buttons [her maker is a Danish lacemaker and makes up her mind differently at times...........]
Stitching crisp bags together will be interesting, tho not as interesting as sweetie wrappers or cake ?tins perhaps.
I do like making female figures in whatever medium, what to do with them, once I have finished, is more of a problem.
I led a workshop for another of my stitching groups, T.A.G.S,[what diverting names we have, not as good as hairdressers tho] in making wire figures a month or so back, which we will display in a Circle Dance at our July exhibition. Although they enjoyed getting a figure together, only a few really developed the figure further -into something individual and different.
I suspect there is an Art and Craft division there.
I tried to explain to the members that I like to make fat-ladies because they have female strength, rather than be judged as sex objects. They took it personally unfortunately and were not best pleased.
The local exhibition this weekend is with yet another group, Peninsula Crafts, a rather down to earth name,, where we will each demonstrate our art/craft. The plan is that each will have a table and 2 screens behind, where we will do, for the day, whatever it is that keeps us off the streets.
We aspire to sell some of our stuff and also encourage other local people to join. Usually we have a rather pompously contrived "exhibition" where I suspect I provide a backdrop for the wood turners and jewellery makers to sell their stuff.
Truth is that if I try and make cushions or something useful I just can't get it together to make anything worthwhile. What I like doing is to cobble together my ladies in whatever medium happens to be at hand.
I do have some quite nice pottery figures this year, but will have to sell them for twopence to get rid of them, which I should do, but I get shirty and pompous myself about selling so cheap.
Last week I made a rather nice little clay figure, but just as I had successfully fired her once and was ready to fire her glaze, I knocked her off the stand she was perilously waiting on, and she broke her foot.
At least with fabrics I can drop them and the cat can sleep on them and they still come up smiling.
What I am doing in all these groups is - mostly suffering. I am not at ease in any situation in which I am not firmly in charge, and then if I do manage a coup, the resultant responsibility destroys me.
However one must get on with it, or go potty at home.

1 comment:

carol said...

Crisps bags! What has local craft come to! A long way from cross-stitch, gold thread embroidery and tapestry work it seems.

I love your fat ladies (you are very loyal to them) and now Beryl Cook has died you should become their queen.