The Lunatic Fringe

Sometimes life is your art. Sometimes art is your life. But always we are, by our human nature artists. The structure we give our lives is as vital a life form as the structure we give the many ways we create.
The Lunatic Fringe is where we recognize and celebrate the wonderful art explored just in our humanity. We believe in all art. We believe it to all be "fringy" from the odd corners of our souls and our worlds.
We welcome guest blogs from all kinds of artists from fiber artists, quilters, formal arts, odd doodlers and sculpters, and those artists who sculpt in the way their lives are built. It's part of our human nature. Are you one of the Lunatic Fringe?

Thursday, October 20, 2011

April H. Center: A Brilliant Painter with Words

Holding up the World by Ellen Anne Eddy
April Center is a word painter in the Indiana Dunes area. Her images flow out of the page and grab you tightly. Sometimes they are warm and caressing. Sometimes they reach out in ways that are ferocious. But whatever they do, they always touch you somewhere deeply.

What Matters Now
Copyright 2011
By April Center

The trees know. The seasons require attention of different matters.
In spring they stretch their arms reaching for the light and the warmth,
With an awakening that follows throughout the millennium.
The sap slowly flows it’s lifeblood through their veins long before tiny sprouts appear
Like tiny fingers, whispering, reaching to grasp the hope and pursuit of sunlight,
Finding succor for the summer
Ever beckoning, wooing, breathing, soothing.
No need for wondering what matters now in the halcyon days of spring.

The trees know what matters in the glorious summer.
The trees are in full prayer and reverie – their chorus is heard easily
Above the canopy bestowing silent solace
Their arms with a million fans swaying, sometimes gently laughing, softly sighing
Sometimes boldly shouting, clapping and cheering
To the heartbeat of the wind – dancing,
Ever dancing with a grace beyond compare
The trees know what matters now in the ripe days of summer.

The trees know what matters in the fullness of time
In the slow fall from grace
No longer hindered, the trees and their kin shrug off their summer shroud
To be found scattered and strewn on the ground preparing a bed.
They sigh with a satisfied sleepiness after the dance.
A kaleidoscope of color shivers from their frames,
The painted beauty now leaves no trace,
What is left is the enduring body and face.
In the twilight of autumn the trees know what matters in the universe.

The trees know what matter most at this time. No longer concealed
Is their courage standing in place, always there but rarely seen while encased
In their garments of lace.
Not languishing, not laggardly, they brace
For the sharp, serrated winds that gust with the squalls of winter,
Withering all but the trees, for the trees know what matters in a world of much waste.
You'll find more writing of April's at Prudy's View.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Pat Winter: It's Always the Quiet Ones

Crazy for CQ.
The best Mermaids ever!

Tucked in a cute little farmhouse outside Chesterton Indiana lives a quiet wild lady named Pat Winter. Pat has to be one of the most inventive crazy quilters ever. And when I'm lucky she dyes fabric with me. This incredible mermaid book is one of her masterpieces. Here's what she has to say for herself.

 "Once upon a time there was a girl who gathered bits and bobs and her friends made fun of her "junk" collecting......  Up until a few years ago I never considered what I did art. I had always wanted to paint and draw however I did not inherit that skill from my mother. I did inherit the desire to collect and this I did very well. From a very young age I began gathering every little discarded trinket, pretty fabric scrap and bauble I found unusual or interesting and slipped them into a chest in my closet for safe keeping. As a teen only my closest friends saw my strange collection of bits and bobs. Unfortunately those items never made it with me through life but my desire and need to gather remains with me still today.
 This comes in handy for a crazy quilter. Vintage laces, doilies, buttons, broken jewelry and beads have made it into my current collection  as well as velvet remnants from Holiday dresses, lace trims from wedding gowns, silk, satin and moire from cast off prom dresses and an ongoing stash of "fancy fabrics" gathered from my shopping ventures all find a home in my studio. I enjoy making unusual and useful items using the crazy quilt method, not traditional wall hangings or bed coverings.
I can't explain what drives me to create, I blame it on my muse. All I know is that whatever it is that makes me spend hours stitching and embellishing almost every day of my life is too strong to deny and brings me much pleasure. Imagine finding yourself locked in a chocolate shop and you were a chocoholic. That is how I feel when I walk into my studio and begin gathering items for a project. Lunatic? Yes, I believe so."

You'll find Pat's amazing work at Winter Gatherings, where you can also purchase her new magazine, Crazy Quilt Gatherings, full of projects, tips, teaching and of course, crazy beautiful work.