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(continued from last posting)

Oh but my highlight of the day, was visiting Katherine Gullo…

http://katherinegullo.com/

This cottage, again, wood clad, sat nestled between trees, back a little from the road, was a joy! From the second I stepped out of the car I knew I would love this artist. The door and window frames of the house were painted in brightly coloured patterns of zigzags and dots and triangles… but stepping into the place was like being slapped… instant gratification of the patterned kind! Every single surface, textile, object… covered in colour and pattern and deep deep joy. But it was not cacophonous at all… there was a harmony to it, a rhythm. I sat on a painted chair at a painted table, geometric pattern against sweeping branches, butterflies and caterpillars. My eyes roaming the walls, and furniture. The lines between textile, mosaic, ceramic and painted surface blurred. I don’t know how she does it but the woman is a genius. I have warned my husband I might paint some furniture when I get home… he has no idea…

She also had a shed, I’ll post a picture… filled with her work ready for the season to start. Bowls of ceramic fruit shapes, painted with completely enveloping pattern. A place of real joy… This artist has a big heart, a huge grin and carrot muffins to die for… her work is a total expression of who she is. I came away so inspired by her, her work and her surroundings.

On the way home, driving through Amish country, white houses with blue doors… all the same colour blue, the acceptable sort of blue, we saw children playing in fields. Boys in flapped front trousers and breeches, white shirts, black jackets and straw hats, girls in navy or black dresses, brown bonnets covering their entire heads. In the slopes between the trees down to the stream, were a group of dens built from branches, leaves and bits of canvas and bits and pieces. Their play derived from the landscape. My tour guide Mike saying “they leave less of a scar on the earth than we do”

We did call into an Amish quilt shop too. But to be honest I found it a little disappointing, as the quilts – most of them – seemed to be made for “The English” so had little of the plain charm I was expecting. I was intrigued by the use of machinery though… which I thought was eschewed… tales of tractors being used to do the work, drive the equipment, but not drive itself, so the whole thing being pulled by a team of horses, the tractor engine driving the ploughing mechanism. There has also been a relaxing of the telephone rule, as some of the community are now employed outside, they need to be contactable by phone. So a little kiosk is built on someone’s property, away from the house, and this is where the community telephone lives. It seems each little community has its schism, a break from rules as and when required, but then there are breaks away when some find it unacceptable.

As Jean and Wendy said before me… it is going to take a while for all this to settle in, the effects of this week to filter through and show its effects in my work and thinking…

A great great day.

Big grin.


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