November 11, 2018

Duck and Rabbit

Musavir's Pink-Headed Duck,
hand-stitched cotton thread on machine stitched dish towel remnant, 2018  9"x8"

Musavir's Pink-Headed Duck is based on a watercolor painting (c.1780) by Indian painter Musavir Bhawani Das that I came across when I was researching animals for the Vanishing Kingdom. Although the pink-headed duck was once found in parts of the Gangetic plains of India, Bangladesh and in the swamps of Myanmar, it was feared extinct since the 1950s. Numerous searches have failed to provide any proof of continued existence but it has been suggested that it may exist in the inaccessible swamp regions of northern Myanmar and some sight reports from that region have led to its status being declared as critically endangered rather than extinct. 

Riverine Rabbit (Vanishing Kingdom), 2018,
 hand-stitched cotton thread on machine stitched dish towel remnant, 9"x8"

I wasn't able to fit a riverine rabbit on the original map, so I stitched this separate portrait, Riverine Rabbit (Vanishing Kingdom). The riverine rabbit, also known as the bushman rabbit or bushman hare, is one of the most endangered mammals in the world, with only around 500 living adults, and 1500 overall. This rabbit has an extremely limited distribution area, found only in the central and southern regions of the Karoo Desert of South Africa's Northern Cape Province.

I consider these two small stitchwork pieces to be bridge pieces between my old and new work. They both relate to the Vanishing Kingdom map, but I stitched them on dish towel remnants, and I'll be creating pieces on this particular type of dish towels for some of my next body of work. When I first saw one of the towels, which are machine stitched in a grid design, I knew that I wouldn't be using them in the kitchen! I was immediately drawn to the idea of combining my 'mosaic style' stitchwork onto their surface, thinking of the pre-stitched threads as the 'grout'. I like that I can compose images using the boundaries of a grid, especially since I'm continuing my exploration of translating thread into a reflection of traditional mosaics. They are companion pieces both in subject, size and medium, and are part of a group that I’m calling the 'dish towel tapestries'.

1 comment:

gypsy moon designs said...

All the creatures have it hard because of us humans. I love the detail and that they are on dish towels. Can't wait to see more of 'dish towel tapestries'.