The “What was I thinking?” phase
This project started with excellent planning, a well-written proposal, and the excitement of acceptance. Now I’m trying to pull the dozens of design possibilities together into FOUR cartoons. (See heading above. Four!) Early on, the board members and I saw how four colorful tapestries would enliven the stone church space and fit beautifully below the restored sconces. I’m in a very messy head space time, productively filling a notebook with abstracted sketches of birds, animals, landscapes, and plants from the Valley Grove area. I’m examining many historical Norwegian tapestries for the borders I like best. And what about people? Pastor Quammen, a long-serving early pastor of the parish, was known to ski between churches, and from his home in Farmington out to Valley Grove Church. Perhaps a skiing pastor will fill the center area of one tapestry.
There will be animals and birds in a border
I have long admired the old Norwegian tapestries with friezes of abstracted animals surrounding a center frame, and I’d like to weave a design inspired by them. Sometimes there are many tiny animals in the border.
Sometimes there are fewer, larger animals and birds.
Eagles flew above Valley Grove when the Norwegian immigrants first built the stone church on a high point in the valley. After nearly disappearing in the 20th century, you can spot nests in trees and see them soaring. For a billedvev eagle I started with an eagle clip art image online, and made more simplified, angular lines. From the sketchbook:
Flowers and trees will be celebrated, too
Nerstrand State Park abuts the restored oak savanna behind the churches. It is home to the dwarf trout lily, which grows in only three counties in Minnesota and is on the federally endangered list. It blooms for a short time in the spring. On an outing to the churches with Kelly Marshall on April 22, we saw many!
So of course a dwarf trout lily will emerge in woven form too.
I have a long way to go. But thanks are due to the Nordic Churches Project for this challenge!