I wanted to share some of my thoughts and reflections on Vineyards. I have several books that I have been referring to with beautiful photos. Oregon Wine Country is one of my favorites.
What has captured my imagination with fiber and Vineyards is the linear qualities that you find when you look up on a hill at a vineyard. I am really a novice when it comes to wine making and the art that it entails, however, I have a great appreciation for the hard work and dedication that goes into the lifestyle of the winemaker.
I recently was having a conversation with a winemaker. He shared with me all the different grapes that were grown on the property and what wines were produced from the harvest. There were several different kinds of grapes grown on a fairly small area. I noticed that the direction of the vines were going in several directions as well as different shapes of land dedicated to the specific grape. Here is an example of what I am referring to. If you scroll down the page you will see what I am talking about.
The winemaker told me that often times a layout of the vines will be an economy of the land but more importantly, growing grapes is an art and often the grower will situate the vines for a specific grape according to the exposure to the sun, the winds, the angle they are on a hill, etc. All these things and many more considerations affect the outcome of what they are trying to produce when they make the wine.
That is a pretty simple explanation for a complicated industry and art. What I wanted to convey is that this has become my inspiration for my Vineyard series. The fact that lines converge and come together, are broken and straight, is the essence and starting point for this work. The work that I will produce will always be an abstraction of these elements. You will never see a realistic interpretation of a vineyard in this series.
I mentioned I was going to show you several pictures of what I have completed to date in my last post but I changed my mind. I wanted to give you some explanation about my inspiration. Needless to say I decided to break up a couple of posts.
Here is my first piece that I completed. After we complete a piece in our workshop, we are asked to submit a written critique that has a specific format and outline. We review our work and critiques as a class once a week. The works that I have decided to produce for this class are fairly small. This piece is 14"x16" at the furthest points.
I won't give you the full critique here but simply a few comments. I used this first piece to play with line and scale. The colors I selected were primarily based on contrast more than anything. Color for this piece was probably about third on the list of considerations.
My first priority was working out a few things with the expression of line. All the colors that you see are individually pieced in this work. The background cloth is printed. I played around with overlapping and small pieces for the composition to see if I could capture the idea of several kinds of grapes growing on a plot of land. That was my intent for exploration in this piece. I would say that in summary, it is a starting point.
There are a lot of things in this piece that I would do different. That is how a series works though, I don't have to figure out everything in one piece. This piece is Vineyards 1.
This week we have been exploring color. I have completed several small works exploring color. It has been interesting needless to say. As I mentioned before, this early in a series not all the answers are addressed in each piece. Instead, it moves me to the next piece and the next. I have five small works completed as I write. It is interesting to put them all up on my wall and look at them to see the progression, similarities and new things that I have introduced. I will post the color pieces in my next post.
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