CHAMBON SUR LAC, FRANCE 2009
As part of the Horizons Contemporary Art Fair, we chose to highlight the art of ‘point and bobbin’ lace making (once a widely practiced craft from the Puy De Sancy region). We wove an artwork of large-scale lace and played with a myth of giants in the forest. The piece begins with 5000 feet of thread (or in this case 1/2″ rope).
We spent one month in the landscape, weaving the lace using techniques we learned from a local lace museum and school. The woven pattern is derived by combining traditional lace-making techniques with patterns found in nature, weaving relationships between the landscape, the culture and the artwork. The public were invited to participate in the lace making.
Conceived in the computers but shaped and molded through cultural and environment, what would our lace object look like?
We did not know until we got there. Our site was in a field of daisies, along a gateway to a national park, the lace took the form of a daisy, (“margritte” en francais), an homage to the landscape, as well as the lace-maker and actual grandmother ,named Margritte who visited us routinely on the site.
The bright white object was visible from miles away and carried different appearances and projections based upon the distance at which it was visible – from 10 miles away as a patch of snow, 5 miles as a snowflake, a mile it is a flower, from the foot path it is a daisy.
To work with this shift in scale, over-sized tools are necessary. As you walk through the meadows and volcanoes, perhaps discovering a flower or an unknown view, you may come across the giant pins and bobbins laying in the landscape, as if these mythical giants just wondered off for a cup of tea. With the pins in place, acting as guides, the doily’s production is a process of “meditative making” which will grow over the coarse of the summer.
- Commissioning Agent: Office de Tourisme du Massif du Sancy
- Artist: Freya Bardell with Brian Howe
- Team: Ed Henry, Bao Quoc Doan, Jihyeun Byeon,
- Medium: 5000 feet polypropolyene Rope, rebar, Landscape pegs, Wooden bobbins and pins
- Dimensions: 50′ by 50′ by 3′ high
- Budget: 8000 Euros
- Year Completed: 2009