Friday, December 1, 2023

California Fiber Adventures

The sightseeing I did in California, of course, also included the Golden Gate Bridge. Actually I went there twice, the first time because the person I was going to visit didn't open the door when I arrived a mere 90 minutes ahead of time (it turned out their doorbell was broken, she simply hadn't heard me). As their house is right on the edge of the Presidio (talk about a very attractive place to live!) I consulted my phone and maps app and decided there was time to walk to the Golden Gate Lookout and be back for an on-time-appearance. That way I got to experience a sunset at Golden Gate Bridge. 

The next morning I parked my car on the eastern side of the bridge and went up to it, saw the visitor center and the interesting display on how the bridge was built, and then took a long walk along the bay.

Did you know that there had been thoughts for painting the bridge black and yellow?

My travels also included quite a bit of fiber activity.

Apart from meeting Dolores Miller and Judith Content as I have already mentioned, I also went to see Ula Ludie's exhibition which she had posted about on Instagram, @ulaludie, just a little bit before I departed for my trip in a bookstore on 16th St. (For once I managed to easily find a parking space, right in front of the shop, but then almost left my phone there...)

The next day I visited Joe Cunningham in his gallery on Market St., a meeting we had talked about when I saw his exhibition at Festival of Quilts in Birmingham.

At Festival of Quilts, Birmingham, Joe Cunningham and I in front of
his triptych "Marisupol" in remembrance of the lives lost during
the Russian attacks on the city during the ongoing war on Ukraine.


And then, for the remaining four days of my stay, I got to spend time with the Pixeladies.  First stop with Kris after a stroll across campus and through the Berkeley University Library 

Thirty years ago, when I was an exchange student in High School and
all my classmates went off to college I was already disappointed
that I was not a resident of California, because I really would have liked
to attend UC at Berkeley...

and Indian Food for lunch was ... a yarnstore.

Very tempting, of course, and I did give in to temptation, a little bit.

These days with the Pixeladies, of course, were not only fiber talk, but a lot of fun activities plus fiber talk on the side. We went for a wine tasting in Napa Valley as a group

Dolores Miller, me, Deb Cashatt, Kris Sazaki, Jan Soules (from left)

 with a conclusion of the trip at the di Rosa Gallery with the Northern California Funk Art collection.

Deb taking a picture of this installation, which, unfortunately,
I did not get the details for...

Richard Shaw, Sinking Ship in Couch, 1971

I was very much intrigued by the feeling you get when entering this house made from glass bottles. Yes, not a construction method for houses all over the world (certainly not in German latitudes as insulation would be slightly difficult during winter), but...

Mildred Howard, Memory Garden, Phase I, 1990

I mean - wouldn't it be interesting to live in a surrounding like this?

I spent a full day with Deb Cashatt, first touring her studio and then interviewing her for the Guild's magazine, probably the issue after next one, and we enjoyed exchanging aspects of our fiber involvement and thoughts on making quilts. Now that the Pixeladies have 'retired' their joint venture, she is embarking on a promising solo trip in the quilt world, with a quilt in Quilt National and several others in other prestigious events as well.

A special facet of fiber adventure was my attempt at sending a printed copy of the Guild's magazine to Sarah Swett. I had thought it would be cheaper to mail her personal copy with the article on her from within the United States than from Europe, and so I ventured out to the post office. On a Saturday morning - bad idea, and we should have just got the postage on the computer. The long line quickly convinced me to try the self-postaging machine in the hallway, and after only three or four attempts Kris (who had be then come to assist me!) we did manage to get it off. Sarah has since confirmed the safe arrival of the little package, so everything went well. And it was still just a little bit cheaper than from Europe, if not by much. 

By now I have been back for 10 days already, with many wonderful memories, and I do feel inspired to get back to my sewing machine, making method(s) and fiber concerns. A lot is changing here in my daily set up as I will be starting a new job in January with a completely different arrangement of living circumstances, but right now I am taking it easy, weathering off a cold which I caught from my son and looking out at the snow.


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