Thursday, July 19, 2018

My talk for Halifax

Thank you Nova Scotia for giving Penny and me this beautiful space to show our work.

Penny and I love to stitch and are happiest when we are stitching.
This show reflects our happiness.     
Our work complements each other.  Penny observes the small details that add up to make a big picture, observing, recording, remembering specifics as she documents nature and life's events.

I am concerned about the whirl of it all.
About how time and life go by so fast.
 Not To Know But To Go On is three years big.
 Cloud of Time is one year big.
The three drawings on the wall add up to be six months big.
Time is a material in this work.
American artist Kiki Smith said that art is something that moves from the inside of us into the world.
Art is a way to think, it is a form of communication.

The slowness of the stitched mark gives me thinking time.  As I work with cloth on my lap, I find out from my hands what is in my heart.

The large stitched journal that hangs in the middle of this space  began as a way to slow down and celebrate my turning 60.  I started it on my 59th birthday and ended it on my 61st.
I used up fabrics saved over my lifetime, and every day for three years, I stitched up an entire skein of embroidery floss.   A luxurious amount of thread was used, over 1000 skeins, yet the piece has the simplicity of a Finnish rug.  The colour of thread was chosen without looking, because we don't know, do we, what each day will bring?  Chance is an important element in this piece, as it is in life.

Domestic life, the sheets we fold, the dishes we wash, so much of our lives are spent doing repetitive tasks, most of them every day, in order to accomplish the bigger things.  Those repetitions disappear within the whirl of time.  This piece holds them.
You can't change things.  Change yourself.  Be alone. Take every opportunity to be alone.      Not To Know But To Go On.   Agnes Martin

For more about this exhibition and the opening,
please go to my updates and also to Penny Berens' blog post about the opening.
Thank you to my husband Ned for all the arty photos in this post. xo


  1. Such a pleasure and a joy to see this post. I first saw your stunning Not To Know But To Go On in a couple of magazines a while back and was amazed. Interesting to see the difference in colour used with Cloud of Time, so soft and relaxing. I'll now hop across to Penny Beren's blog.

  2. It is a stunningly beautiful show. Congratulations to you and Penny. Your work is harmonious together. Don't miss this show if you're in

  3. (((Judy))) your words and work sing with Penny's, a beautiful duet!

  4. Such an inspiring post Judy! I love how daily life is held in this beautiful piece. Congratulations to you both! xo

  5. Judy,
    the mystery of time, eloquently spoken in stitch.

  6. Years ago I was part of an organization ‘Bread for the World ‘. Your work, your voice,your generous spirit provides sustenance for all privileged to experience. Thank you.

    1. How beautiful for you to say that. I am humbled beyond words. xo

  7. When you put words to your art .. I love what I see more and more and more. Heartfelt BLESSINGS to you ...

  8. Bravo to you both as you bring your art and hearts out into the world.

  9. There is such inspiration here to keep going ... how much difference that makes

  10. A beautiful pair you are ;-) !!!
    Wish you lots of visitors !!!


Thank you for taking the time to connect. Much appreciated.xx