Even a Golf Vacation Includes Great Textiles

Our two weeks in Maine ended with–what else?–a delayed flight home from Boston, a dead car battery (AAA guy, “Oh yes,this happens all the time when you leave a car for two weeks without running it.” What!?!!), and ripping out stair carpeting where the cat decided to punish us for being gone.

IMG_7095Even when vacations have a different purpose, in this case golf and family, I always manage to find inspiring textile experiences. This time, on a day when rain precluded golf, we drove to the Bowdoin College Art Museum for a magnificent exhibit, “Winslow Homer and the Camera: Photography and the Art of Painting.” I’m always on the lookout for art works featuring knitting for my friend Annemor Sundbø; here is a beautiful Homer chalk drawing, “Fisher Girls on Shore, Tynemouth, 1884.”

We also visited the Peary-MacMillan Arctic Museum on campus.

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It was charming and informative, and amazingly, had a wonderful textile exhibit, “Threads of Change: Arctic Clothing and Identity in the North.” Polar bear pants!

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Naturally waterproof jacket made of seal intestines!

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For the unusual beauty of the clothing, and because I understood how difficult and time-consuming it was to create it, the “wow” factor of the exhibit was high. I was also inspired by the focus on how contemporary artists are both preserving the techniques and using them as a jumping-off point for contemporary artistic interpretations.  See several films from the Smithsonian Institution about sewing gut here. See more photos of fancy gut parkas here.

On the way home, we stayed overnight in Boston, leaving just enough time for a visit to the Fuller Craft Museum in Brockton. Recommended. Each of the exhibits in this small museum was wonderful, including a show of Japanese culinary items and a biennial member exhibit including a wonderful tapestry by Maine tapestry artist Barbara Burns. (I wrote about visiting her studio in 2016.)

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An exhibit of new acquisitions included tapestries by two of my favorite artists.

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Archie Brennan. “Drawing Series XXIV Head with Red Marks,” 1999.
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Susan Martin Maffei. “Green Nude,” 1998.
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Susan Martin Maffei. “Angel #1,” 1994.

This post included a few references to golf, so you might think I’m a good golfer.  So far, I’m certainly a more skilled weaver than golfer!  But I did enjoy the views to the ocean on the Maine golf course.

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The most memorable part of the vacation will be the brief days with granddaughters Cora and Alden. On the last day I took the bag of beach combing treasures they left behind and made a Christmas tree.  I’ll send them a photo in December.

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