Abandoned ‘Gingko House’

IMG_8953Here I was making a tiny little quilt, enjoying the soft feel of the felted sweater base, taking pleasure in tucking a little sliver of black silk behind the black/gold gingko print in the near-center, finding intrigue in the fiery sheer print defining the sky above the roof… (because of course the central shape took on the characteristics of a house).

IMG_8952At some point, the prospect of completing the piece made me feel bored or restless or both. 

Maybe it was that the black house had nothing to say to me.  A mute house of shadows? Or could it have been chock full of old hauntings that I just didn’t want to hear again? 

On the way up to Montreal last week, I left it in a bathroom in St. Albans, Vermont.  It was weirdly satisfying.

It may have been thrown out by the cleaning crew or it could have been grabbed by someone who saw it as an unexpected little find. Or maybe someone took it in a swipe of puzzled acquisition and THEN threw it out. I’ll never know. 

And it doesn’t matter. For me, the treasure was in letting it go. And you know what? I can now start to listen to what that dark house had to say. 


7 thoughts on “Abandoned ‘Gingko House’

  1. Liz

    Oh my … I’m trying to imagine what I would do if I found a cloth like that. Run out into the parking lot shouting, “Wait! Wait!” most likely. But then … ?

    I think I know what you mean about the dark mutterings of some cloth, though. It is only recently that I came upon a solution at Windthread … a sutra that drives the maddening voices out of my head. It is a blessed relief to let go of that which I cannot change.

    1. deemallon

      In this case it was pure silence until after i let it go. For me this was an opportunity to create completely outside the bounds of the cloth. I once sent a patch worked rectangle to grace for similar reasons. The creating became its arrival elsewhere and its assumption of a different life. Very different from shipping a quilt that was purchased, by the way.

      1. Liz

        I understand this … sending something away. So too do we raise our children so that they may one day leave, arrive elsewhere, and begin a different life.
        Cloth and story … life lived beyond our sight and reach, but carrying our touch nonetheless.
        Thank you for this provocative post (in the most positive sense of the word).

        1. deemallon

          I hadn’t thought about the connection to children, but thank you for noting. The house can speak to me through others, too, it would seem. Both boys will be home for the summer. One here now, the other flying in tonight. It makes all those feelings and thoughts about young lives venturing forth very alive. And, I just did a sink full of dishes from someone ELSE’s culinary adventure, so there’s that, too!

  2. Mo Crow

    “the good thing about being an artist is the work has to go away!”
    a quote from Kiki Smith in an interview a few years back that doesn’t exist online any more

  3. Donna Funnell

    Shared this , hope you don’t mind.
    I am also a fabric collage artist. We have a lot in common ! When someone likes a piece of my art and I like them, I give it to them. Satisfying in deed.


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