October 12, 2014, Zona del Sol, Santa Fe, NM
by Bridget Green
Ten women graced the sunny table in the front room of Yarn and Coffee. We each arrived with our own thoughts, ranging from chaotic to calm, our own stories from the morning and years of mornings, and our own vision of what each of us might stitch into “Ordinary Cloth.”
With Stella Reed’s lead, we sent pens sailing and scrawling across the page in open response to single word prompts, from body parts to universal themes. What is the eye, the mouth, or loneliness, really? The group shared selected phrases, while keeping the bold shapes of other words and stanzas mollified by the page. We shifted like this time and again, from solitary moments of reflection and sculpting words to spoken moments, listening. Metaphors brought distinction to more nebulous thoughts, like a child capturing a monster by painting its portrait.
We arranged works, one word, one phrase and perhaps another to put in writing on cloth. We stretched ourselves on paper to invite our imaginations to play.
Stories poked through like bright colors of embroidery thread and created lines both raw and refined upon which to connect. When participants were each following threads of their artistic plan, thinking half-stolen by action opened up to associations. Free commentaries soon sprang out from behind the coyote fence of formality. Good fences make good framework for collaboration.
images - Edie Tsong, Stella Reed