Tag Archives: integrity

A Question of Integrity

7 Oct

So about my booth in downtown Asheville, at the Woolworth Walk Gallery. I need the booth to at least pay for itself and monthly rent is $45. I’ve been there a month and two cloth pieces have sold.  Both cloths were $45 each. I’m mentioning price because the two that sold were the least pricey pieces hanging. Is that why they sold?–their lower price? And then I’m wondering that since both pieces were part of the “supermoon” series — is that why they sold? And if so, should I continue with this series, at least one/month?  I’m thinking about this and it’s disturbing me. Because…

…because…the thoughts I’m having are alien to me.  Thoughts like, “I think this might have more universal appeal.”  And “Maybe something like this will pay October’s rent.”  I’ve never considered marketability.  Never.  I made/make cloth because I can’t help myself.  But now I’m thinking about paying rent and making one cloth a month that will do that…and this brings up questions of authenticity and integrity.

Actually, it’s this cloth–“Supermoon with Pacyderms” that brought these questions of integrity to the surface.  It’s  VERY different from my previous cloth work.  Perhaps it borders on trite?    And even though it embodies a certain tenderness,  my personal discomfort level with it is still high.

Beth  commented that it would be interesting to see how and/or if my work changes as a result of going public.  I think that’s my concern.  That marketability–to a degree–influenced this cloth.    And even though, for me, there is a heart element with Pacyderms,  I did not want to “show” the cloth here.  Maybe that’s what I should look at–the not -wanting -to- show .  Maybe that feeling holds the answer to this question of integrity and standing true.





A Reminder to Self

30 Jun

Six months ago when I started blogging, I did so as a means of record keeping–for myself mainly. I wanted a visual reminder of how my days were. A reminder of where I had been and where I am going. The process has become absolutely so much more than I would ever have anticipated. Both in terms of clarifying issues for myself, and as a means of “getting over myself.” Initially I fretted that I was putting too much out there. That I was “exposing” too much of myself. Making myself too vulnerable. To what? Good question. And to which I now respond, “So what?” Maybe I’ve swung too far in the opposite direction. But I figure, no one has to read this but me. And so, for today, still processing the recent turn of events in my life. With a steely commitment to authentic voice.

When it all started “going down” I wasn’t thinking ahead. Didn’t wonder how things would be afterwards…. Simply too focused on just dealing/coping with what was right there. Determined to make the right choices with kindness, harmony and yes, we did arrive at consensus. We succeeded at those. The harmony may be a bit off key. But now is the time of “how things would be afterwards.” And the things I’m seeing about myself are not pretty. The awareness of having squashed authentic self. Self’s voice. Self’s truth. It seems like a dreadful thing to do, in hindsight, and we (crone and I) are looking at this. How did that serve us? Good question.

And I NEVER pay attention to horoscopes in the local events magazine, but this one got my attention. “‘The only thing we learn from history,’said German philosopher Georg Hegel, ‘is that we never learn anything from history.’ I’m urging you to refute that statement in the coming weeks, Sagittarius. I’m pleading with you to search your memory for every possible clue that might help you be brilliant in dealing with your immediate future. What have you done in the past that you shouldn’t do now? What haven’t you done in the past that you should do now?”

And all fingers seem to be pointing back to one thing–that for the sake of peace/harmony/conflict avoidance–I simply stepped out of the game. Out of myself. Into some vacuum of numbed existence. And to say I’m appalled is to put it mildly. I’m pissed. off. at. myself. Even though I understand. And the funny thing is, the voice that I feared had developed laryngitis? The silenced voice? It’s roaring in my ears.  As in “Woman. Listen to her roar.”

Other thoughts arising as well.  Thoughts requiring action. The decision to do more than “think” about selling my work. To stop whining around because I can’t figure out how to price it. To stop denigrating by off-the-cuff comments like, “Well, you know, I just sew scraps of fabric together.” To stop taking the work personally in a sense, because really, I have NO idea where it comes from. It just seems to happen. On its own. And that point of view helps me get closer to being able to price the cloth because little me is out of the picture.  And so because my monthly income has been reduced by half–and it wasn’t so great to begin with–I’m putting this out to the universe.

So, spent the weekend getting  pieces ready to show to an interested person on Tuesday. And I’m going to present the cloths with the love I feel for them. Not apologetically. Not diminishing or enhancing them in any way. Just as they are. What they say. How they came to be. And we will see.

Meanwhile,  with the help of garden, family, friends and the sense of some ineffable support I’m just going as Jude would say.  Metaphorically my tread feels lighter–there’s more of a spring to the step–and here is what my day encompassed:

I asked the website “Mr. Smarty” why all of my zucchini blossoms were male.  The answer.  Male blossoms open up first.  I’ve got tons of male blossoms, and only a few female.  This isn’t really so bad.  Maybe this year I won’t be overwhelmed with this vegetable.  And now I know how to cross pollinate them if necessary.

zuchinni and shovel


French green beans–the long skinny ones–coming on strong.  There’s one about dead center and then a few little ones to the left.  And look what else I see.  Do you see it?  The greyish/brown shining thing?  Baby slug.  But my battle with them is over. The plants are strong enough now to take care of themselves.

and the brussels sprouts are making, in the crotch of the leaf stem. Great design.brussels sprouts

cucumbers–the kind where the skin is so thin you eat the entire thing–and they were an accident–what I wanted but couldn’t find. These were packagedcucumbers
as a conventional cucumber–and for years my cukes have been bitter but every year I try again–so not only do I have sweet cukes this year, but they feel like a gift. A magic offering of sorts, and that’s just how I’m going to understand what seemed like a mistake but isn’t.

Angels of the Desert hollyhocks from Grace:grace's hollyhocks

two of the three rows of indigo I have growing. I think I mentioned before–the little plants I started got into the ground late. Weather got too cold right when I was going to transplant them. And I could have planted them much deeper but I didn’t think that far ahead. Not they’re pretty branchy. But thick even still. In a few weeks I’m going to harvest my first cutting. And between now and then I HAVE to figure out how to process the plants without the use of nasty chemicals. There’s a fermentation process I think. No experience with it. But I have a few weeks.


and an experiment with brewing a dye liquid using flowers from my neighbors garden–magnificent purple day lilies.dye with lilies

And finally, with a nod to Mo Crow, here is an image I love. Taken at the native American museum in Buxton, NC while we were on the Outer Banks. The tear rips at my heart but I love the picture, love the image, and if I could figure it all out, this is how the world would see me. Right now. For as long as I wanted.indian museum

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