TOR: Toxic Masculinity Must End

This is my entry into Threads of Resistance. I have named it, Toxic Masculinity Must End. It is printed using Procion MX dye on cotton broadcloth and silk organza. There are additional collaged elements like Meadowlark fabrics and tulle. I used the StencilGirl scroll stencil in its creation in addition to multicolor print sets . 

Please read it’s Artist Statement on the Threads of Resistance website.  
The imagery and ideas contained in this piece came to me in a torrent of creative engagement. I did not know quite what I wanted to express, or how I would present my message. I knew it would fall under the category of Women’s Rights. My artists statement sums up what this piece stirred within me. 

I praise the powers that be that I am able to express myself visually and that I live in a country where I can, indeed, express myself, my thoughts, my experience through art and otherwise. This is not to be taken lightly. Especially not now, when our rights are being questioned and reversed in what can feel like a daily onslaught. When possible political discussion is elevated to partisan name calling and bullying ends conversation before it can begin. 

For the last few years-one of my personal mantras is, “What would an artist do?” This helps me push myself beyond my own perceived barriers by externalizing what it means to be an artist. So why not transform my rage by encouraging us all to follow the $ and #resist. That’s what artists do. I hope you will head over to the Threads of Resistance and check out all the entries. The traveling exhibition will be announced soon. In the meantime, go see what our fellow fiber artists have to say on their chosen topics. 

This weekend in Studio Melly

It started with tickets to Jazz at Lincoln Center , a happy couple, and some great lighting.

The show was amazing.

My weekend continued with a request by my Man to change my cellphone lock screen to this image of David Bowie. And I couldn’t agree more. I remain ever grateful to have walked the earth during David Bowie’s lifetime. When he died, all of them died.

Long live the many lives, and personal recreations of David Bowie.

I am working on my Threads of Resistance piece. It speaks to women and ‘the female body’, using recent news headlines to highlight matters of gender oppression. Decorative elements abound, of course.

This is a work in progress, I will update the blog about it as I progress it. It will measure 20″ square and will have a knife edge finish. It will have machine quilting, and (I hope) embroidered elements. I haven’t made a piece in this manner for a very long time. This is fun!

At the same time, I am printing up a storm with Melly Marks Kits.

Sunday, I gathered as many printed items that could be steamed together. By the end of this week, I will have processed a new batch of color triangle swatches, a Speed Print session related to all the Melly Marks repeats, and more. I love steaming, because it means lots of printed cloth, ready to use!!

So? How about you? What were you up to this weekend?

 

 

Threads, Resistance and being an art blogger

I am really happy to be a member of the group calling themselves, The Artist Circle.  We are concerned people, also artists, who think civic duty is admirable. At the same time, being artists, we often depict our experience visually.

These two ideas merged in this Call For Art on the topic of resistance.

Threads of Resistance <——- Click it!

We have a Facebook page too.

I consider myself an art blogger. I have recently come out with a book. And, I am a political person. I am also an outspoken person; I post nude photos of my body and I challenge societal norms by doing so. I do all of these things through my blog and web site, melanietesta.com. Briefly, I considered refraining from putting my name in the footer of  this Call For. I wondered if, because I have just published a book, perhaps I should remain neutral. But ultimately, I decided, art is a perfect medium to explore ideas of resistance, and Procion MX dye is the perfect media to do that, and well, I am an artist in need of goals.

After thinking all of this through, I placed my name on the list of organizers.

It is frightening to live out loud, to express our opinions and then remain present to the experience of having done so. Cancer in particular has shown me, it is time to live, out-loud-proud. In-all-respects. In light of this, I would like to say, let us please find the means and the self restraint to speak to one another and express our views without reacting to our fellows, so much as seeking to find common ground, learning to laugh together and trusting that full understanding will unfold. 

Let’s all be civil, and have discourse.

And please, let us all make art, like our lives depend on it. It does.