Material Witness will focus on extreme textile process. Images will be posted here showing the history of my work, new work, developing projects and inspiration.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Finished a roaring trip to the desert. We drove from Vancouver to Pendleton, Oregon where some of my family story still is alive. Walked around town and felt the influence of the place on my continued family history. Dropped into the Pendelton Woolen Mill and bought a blanket that wasn't patterned but all white because it reminded me of the sheep my Gran raised both in Pendleton and Alberta. Understood so much about her while standing in the place. Bought the balcony railing from the old hotel in Stanfield for my house and found baby shoes circa 1900. Same as Gran. If they weren't her shoes they belonged to someone she knew.

Drove to the Great Salt Lake from there and journeyed to the Spiral Jetty and waded in the salt water. Had to drive miles along a ranch road, dodge a grumpy bull and keep shooing ornery cows and calves out of our way. Tim was a little shocked to hear that I could still use the appropriate tone and poster to shoo livestock. Ran into a Wiccan Celebration when we arrived, saw a flock of buzzards, a Golden Eagle, and an Azure Butterfly. Tim went walking and I perched on a rock overlooking the Jetty and was kept company by a blue skink. Gorgeous thing.

Returned to the Tabernacle but had to leave because it felt so oppressive to me. Salt Lake City is a testament to order and control. It is also in the most beautiful environment.

Left for Nevada and ran into a place called Rolling Mountain Thunder which is the most remarkable achievement of folk architecture in the desert. Couldn't leave but the winds were howling and we were warned the roads were going to close if we didn't hoof it. We ended up in Reno which was a complete trip. Ended up thrift store shopping but was overwhelmed by all the showgirl props and clothing. Favourite by far was a pair of hip high pink Suede boots that were high heeled wedges and pink mink from half way up. Decided to leave when I watched to e;elderly blue haired women dressed in pink pants suits do a drug deal with Amyl Nitrate and LSD.

Got stuck in the Donner Pass in a blizzard with high winds and impossible roads. Being Canadian, we trooped through. Saw a truck driver cry from the stress of the journey. Saw more than one person weeping in the road stops from fear!

Drove through the fruit farms and wondered if the USA would fall apart without the effort of the many Mexican and Central American workers and without old women having to deal drugs to survive. Met a woman whose mother refused cancer treatment because she didn't want to wipe out her husband and children financially.

Arrived in San Francisco for a real holiday and ate Tapas and toured one of my favourite towns. Bought a beaded velvet jacket to remind my self that Janis Joplin and the Haight still resides in me somewhere.
Got stuck on top of a double decker bus on top of the Golden Gate Bridge in a gale and hailstorm and discovered a new will to survive or at least have a warm toddy. Walked for miles home and through Fort Mason and saw the bottle brushes and huge Agaves. Entertained myself with the funny amusement automatons at the Musee Automatique. Ate sandwiches and Chowder on the Wharf. Listened to blues in the streets and watched a young man play his guitar while standing on his head and thought about the Reno grannies and the farm workers. Watched a crippled street beggar push his wheelchair down the road at the end of the day.

Saw the beautiful Oregon Coast and awoke to a pounding surf. Ate the bread pudding of all bread puddings. Found Myrtle beach wood like bones on the beach.

Listened to the hate of the "Tea Party" people while they were planning to protest the protests against hate in Oregon. Met a caravan of the group " Jews for Jesus" who were also planning a protest and hoping to join with the "Tea Party " people. They were worried about paying taxes and thanked us for sharing our table . I explained that that was okay because we were Canadian and real Canadians shared everything!

Embroidered a white work, dug for rocks and rusty bits. Attended just a few museums and art shows and travelled like there was no tomorrow. Enjoyed my man, good food and coming home!

Pictures will follow.

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