Kathleen Sharp
 Artist's Statement 1998 

My love of the quilt medium is absolute.  I feel very, very free in it, bound only by my imagination.  As an artist my interest lies in bringing observation and sense of the every day and familiar into relation with the intuitive, unconscious aspect of life.  My work often depicts a sense of place that incorporates known and unknown elements at the same time.  Dimension and ample space are ‘engineered’ to afford viewers an opportunity to enter on their own terms, bringing to and taking from the work what they may at different times. 

Seemingly unimportant architectural niches, corners, and fragments provide continuing inspiration.  Recalling these places of solitude and earliest daydreams fosters a highly individual synthesis of reality and imagination that I bring to my work. Anonymous works of Bronze Age art sought out during Mediterranean Basin travels have influenced iconography.  For me, these early works nourish a sense of kinship with humankind over time and spark a deep curiosity regarding the simple act of making one’s ‘marks.' 

The making of a quilt begins with a gathering process.  First, there is a hunt for the right textile to place against another that will evoke exactly the tension or flow or rest point dictated by some inner force.  Soon images come demanding that line and form be defined by cutting and tearing these fabrics into pieces.  The vessels. . . starry nights. . . exotic flora/fauna. . . checkered floors. . . arches transport me into new places. The focus is intense during this hunt and manipulation; even the spark of a colored thread can carry the work forward.  Unexpected changes are made.  A transformation occurs.  What was once a disparate pile of fabric now evokes place, event, feeling. 
The underlying vision of the piece is supported and further understood in the time-consuming process of crafting the materials into a final quilt form. The fabric pieces are stitched into a whole cloth for a front layer. A back layer is designed. The feel of the piece in the hand and the way it lies against the wall are addressed. Dense quilting stitches unify the work on yet another level.  Installation procedures are defined.  The work is titled. It is signed.  It is finished. 
                                                                             Kathleen Sharp  1998


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© Kathleen Sharp 1998